Conflict - There are times when working in groups creates
conflict. Conflicts can also erupt between the government agency
and the citizen groups. There are various forms of conflict resolution,
or alternative dispute resolution. These methods include negotiation,
mediation, arbitration and other more formal methods. Many times
an independent mediator, acceptable to both parties, can be hired
to help resolve the conflict. Disputes between community groups
may be addressed with a community-based dispute resolution center.
Such organizations are often nonprofit and do not charge. In other
areas, attorneys provide this service for a charge.
In disputes with the government, the EPA is beginning to use the
alternative dispute resolution process. In December, 2000, The Federal
Register published the EPA policy on alternative
dispute resolution. The EPA is a strong supporter of this technique
to resolve serious conflicts.
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