Citywide Peer Mediation Program

Safe, Voluntary, Confidential

Introducing a new City program sponsored by DHR in close collaboration with the HSS and in partnership with all City Departments

Program Mission

To promote a positive, healthy work environment where parties are empowered to restore their relationships through a collaborative problem-solving process facilitated by a neutral third party.

About Program

The goal of the Peer Mediation Program is to promote a positive, healthy work environment for all the City's employees. This program is designed to facilitate face-to-face conversations between employees who experience conflict in a forum where all voices can be equally heard and relationships restored. The City desires to provide a process where employees work collaboratively in resolving workplace conflicts at the lowest level possible so that problems do not escalate. Conflicts will be mediated confidentially by volunteer, trained Peer Mediators comprised of City employees.

The Program focuses on:

  • Empowering employees to resolve workplace conflicts at the lowest level possible
  • Providing a safe space for employees to be heard
  • Building trust and relationships necessary for a healthy work environment
  • Voluntary Participation
  • Participant designed resolution

Mediation Process

Mediation Sessions will be facilitated by volunteer, trained Peer Mediators made up of existing City employees. To create a safe and neutral space where both parties can speak and be heard equally, mediations sessions will be facilitated by a mediator that is outside of participants’ management chain. With a focus on diversity and inclusion, Peer Mediators will represent different job classifications, cultural backgrounds, language abilities, job shifts, and work locations.

Mediation sessions will be conducted during regular business hours in which the employee will receive paid release time to participate in the process. Participants must notify their supervisors of their participation; however, no details of the session will need to be shared.

Participants must willingly agree to participate in mediation to receive services from the Peer Mediation Program. The participants must also review and sign our Confidentiality Agreement prior to initiating the mediation process.

Frequently Asked Questions

For answers to some frequently asked questions, please download Participant FAQ - Peer Mediation Program .

Confidentiality

Your safety and confidentiality is an important part of our process. By participating in Peer Mediation, all parties including the peer mediators are expected to follow to the program’s confidentiality guidelines. This includes an agreement to not discuss any content outside of the mediation sessions.

To review our confidentiality policy, please download the Peer Mediation Program - Confidentiality Agreement form .

Become a Peer Mediator

As a Peer Mediator, you will:

  • Learn and practice key mediation techniques
  • Receive release time to mediate sessions during work hours
  • Develop excellent communication, listening, and facilitation skills
  • Help your peers resolve conflicts
  • Advance your emotional intelligence, interpersonal, and leadership skills
  • Create a work environment that is more welcoming and inclusive for our diverse workforce

Eligibility Requirement

  • Peer Mediators must have at least 1 year of working experience with the City.

Application and Selection Process

At this time we are not accepting applications for Peer Mediators. If you are interested in serving as a Peer Mediator, please fill out this interest form and you will receive a notification for the next application cycle. Finalist are selected through a competitive process including an application and interview process.

Mediation Training

Peer Mediators will receive extensive mediation training conducted by DHR and HSS to best equip them with the skills and techniques necessary to be successful. Trainings is scheduled for a series of half days in February and will cover.

  • Foundation Training (i.e. Basic Communication, Cross Cultural Communication, Implicit Bias)
  • Mediation Training
  • Training of relevant City policies and procedure

There is no financial cost to you or your department to in participating in these trainings.

Time Commitment

Selected Peer Mediators will not be expected to spend more than 10% of their work time in a month mediating cases. We do ask that that you commit 18 months of mediation service to the City.

Contact

For additional information, please contact our Peer Mediation Program Manager Joyce Ganthavorn at joyce.ganthavorn@sfgov.org or (415) 557-4988.