Consensus building is an appropriate collaborative form of elder care mediation when chosen by the family on a voluntary basis and motivated by a desire to maintain or restore family relationships. It is undertaken to arrive at an informed agreement which every family member, or almost every member, can live with based on shared values. The family controls the process.
The family may decide to request each participant to voluntarily consent to:
- seek a mediated agreement based upon beliefs held in common
- persevere to find an alternative that does not compromise a basic value of another family member (avoid making a decision merely by a vote)
- abide by established ground rules and time constraints
- respect the perspective of every family member (every member is heard and no one is dominating the outcome)
The role of the mediator in this confidential process is to be neutral and impartial, not to act as a judge to compel or adjudicate the outcome of any matter.
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