Heathcote Conflict Resolution Policy

Purpose

To facilitate timely, supportive, positive resolution of interpersonal conflicts.

Policy

Interpersonal conflict is expected as part of the normal process of living in community. Conflict can be difficult to deal with, but it must be addressed. Conflict among any of us affects all of us.

We would like to use our conflicts productively to make Heathcote a better place to live and to facilitate our understanding of ourselves and one another. Often underlying issues are behind our conflicts; we want to make the extra effort to deal with them.

We are each responsible for speaking our truth, listening with caring, and working toward a resolution that meets the needs of the entire community.

Procedure

  1. It is important that each person’s thoughts and feelings be expressed and that an attempt be made to understand one another’s perspective.
  2. Conflicts will be promptly discussed between the parties in conflict. All members, including those in conflict, are responsible for helping this happen.
  3. We will strive to use conflict resolution techniques, such as active listening, mirroring, and role reversal (see Each Teach Two or other literature on conflict resolution). We will strive to be honest with ourselves and one another. Some important questions to ask ourselves:
    1. What do I feel about this issue and where did that feeling come from?
    2. Are my feelings so strong that I’m not hearing what others say?
    3. Am I operating with the best for the whole group as my goal?
    4. Why do others think differently about this than I do?
    5. Is this issue really worth it? If I give in what will happen in a year? What is going to happen to my relationship with this person if this conflict continues?
  4. Conflict resolution can take many forms; some that have been productive in the past include:
    1. Discussion between individuals is often the first step in identifying the issues underlying a conflict and clearing up any misunderstandings.
    2. Mediation by a neutral third party can be useful if individuals need help dealing with their conflict or finding a resolution.
    3. Group process meetings allow the entire community to participate in the discussion and resolution of issues and to support the individuals in conflict.