A Mediator Explores Conflict
Wayne Plenert is a retired BC and Yukon lawyer. While he had a varied practice, he was primarily a litigator and negotiator for those in conflict. He received training as a mediator in 1984 and since then he has participated in over 1,000 mediations in a variety of conflict areas (personal injury and civil litigation, family, child protection, elder, workplace, church). He has taught mediation, leadership, and conflict-related courses across BC, Alberta, Manitoba, and Yukon, and has developed and helped implement court related victim/offender and family mediation models. Plenert remains involved in much committee work and some BC government appointments.
The social science approach to conflict has changed from a focus on rules and controlling bad behaviour to studying conflict itself, that is, how people behave. Once conflict becomes personal, people want it to end. By exploring how conflict actually works and how people transform as it unfolds, individuals and organizations can find tools for working with conflict instead of trying to avoid it or end it. People and organizations (churches) can work towards affirmative transformation and restoration. This class will discuss themes like: Which is a better starting point: rules or behavior? What makes relationships toxic? How does conflict escalate? How does power work in conflict? What is the role of peacemaking and restoration? How might we use conflict better?
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