Department of the Navy – Alternative Dispute Resolution Program Office

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[edit] General Information

  • Official name: Department of the Navy – Alternative Dispute Resolution Program Office
  • Country: USA
  • City: Washington
  • Type of organization: military organization
  • Date of creation: 1999
  • Interests: Mediation – Arbitration - Training
  • Fields of expertise: Workplace Disputes

[edit] Mission

SECNAVINST 5800.13A established the Department of the Navy – Alternative Dispute Resolution Program Office (DON ADR Program Office) with the following missions:

  • Coordinate ADR policy and initiatives;
  • Assist activities in securing or creating cost effective ADR techniques or local programs;
  • Promote the use of ADR, and provide training in negotiation and ADR methods;
  • Serve as legal counsel for in-house neutrals used on ADR matters; and,
  • For matters that do not use in-house neutrals, the program assists DON attorneys and other representatives concerning issues in controversy that are amenable to using ADR.

The ADR Office also serves as the point of contact for questions regarding the use of ADR. The Assistant General Counsel (ADR) serves as the “Dispute Resolution Specialist” for the DON, as required by the Administrative Dispute Resolution Act of 1996. Members of the office represent the DON’s interests on a variety of DoD and interagency working groups that promote the use of ADR within the Federal Government.

[edit] Quote

In a recent All Hands Message to the Naval Sea Systems Command, VADM Paul Sullivan wrote: “In 1999, the Navy developed the ADR program, designed to increase informal resolution of workplace grievances. It was also designed to enhance team building and communication between managers and employees. Navy wide, in 2007 we achieved a 77 percent resolution rate for the 500 workplace cases that entered the ADR process. Our employees and managers at NAVSEA also participate in ADR. This is extremely important to us because workplace conflicts can sometimes be complex, and can drain focus and energy from the work we need to do. I look upon resolution, especially the resolution that involves both parties developing a newfound respect for each other, as a force multiplier. In my view, ADR is a way to build a stronger NAVSEA. I congratulate our entire NAVSEA workforce for participation in ADR during 2007 and ask that we consider ADR to be a valuable and effective tool in resolving workplace conflicts. I think it is VERY important to get disputes resolved quickly, move on with dignity, and keep us working as a team. I offer to you that a 77 percent success rate is pretty good odds. If you are in a tough situation, give it a try, please”.

[edit] Ombudsman for Reservists and their Civilian Employers

The Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act (USERA) defines employment rights of reservists and National Guard Members. Trained volunteers and the Ombudsmen Services national staff are available to promptly respond to inquiries and conflicts presented by employees or employers. Notably, more than 95 percent of all such requests for assistance are resolved in this informal process.

[edit] ADR for NSPS

The DON has an ADR process for use when employees request reconsideration of their rating of record.

[edit] Introduction to Managing Environmental Conflicts, September 15, 16 2009

Participants in this introductory Environmental Conflict Resolution course will learn how to systematically analyze a situation, identify an appropriate conflict resolution process, and apply effective conflict management concepts such as Interest-Based Negotiation. Participants will also learn basic communication skills to foster long term relationships and better manage, negotiate, and resolve conflict.

Taught by: U.S. Institute for Environmental Conflict Resolution. Location: Dept. of Interior, Corner of 18th and H, Washington, DC. Register Online. Price: $500

[edit] DON Policy Permitting Binding Arbitration for Contract Disputes

The Administrative Dispute Resolution Act and the Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) permit the use of binding arbitration, but only after the head of the agency issues appropriate guidance. On March 5, 2007, the Secretary of the Navy signed SECNAVINST 5800.15, "Binding Arbitration for Contract Controversies."

This policy grants authority to contracting officers to use binding arbitration as a creative, less costly option to resolve issues in controversy that arise under its procurement contracts and contracts involving non-appropriated fund instrumentalities. The policy promotes "ad hoc arbitration," and is entirely voluntary. The goal is to resolve disputes more quickly than the procedures found in the Contract Disputes Act.

[edit] DON Agency-Level Acquisition Dispute Mediation

The DON ADR Program Office now offers another, less formal ADR option to consider: Agency Mediation.

[edit] Conflict Management and Mediation Model (“CM3”)

What’s that newest effort in DON Workplace ADR? It’s CM3. Learn what it is, and how HROs can have an effective workplace ADR system to help managers and employees accomplish the mission of the DON.

[edit] Revised DON ADR Policy Issued

A new Secretary of the Navy Instruction (SECNAVINST 5800.13A, "Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) Policy and Mission of the DON ADR Program Office, "22 Dec 2005.") was signed on December 22, 2005. The new instruction retains the basic DON ADR policy to use ADR to the maximum extent practicable. It also provides additional guidance on confidentiality, the use of ADR agreements, and binding arbitration. It also:

  • Defines the mission of the DON ADR Program Office.
  • Requires shore commands at the Echelon I and II levels to appoint an Activity Dispute Resolution Specialist (ADRS)
  • Eliminates the requirement of implementing instructions
  • Requires coordination of ADR initiatives with the DON ADR Program.

[edit] DON-USIECR Partnership – Get Environmental Mediation or Facilitation

The United States Institute for Environmental Conflict Resolution (USIECR), a small federal agency, helps other federal agencies and interested parties resolve environmental, natural resource and public lands conflicts. The DON successfully used the institute's services in the past (see AnacostiaMediation.doc ), and the DON ADR Program is pleased to announce a new interagency agreement that will allow Navy and Marine Corps activities to get a high quality mediator or facilitator FAST. The agreement also provides training and case assessment services. Since DON ADR Program has partially FUNDED the agreement, the institute can get to work on your project immediately!

[edit] Contact

Office of the General Counsel, 720 Kennon Street SE RM 214 Washington Navy Yard, DC 20374-5012- USA

Phone: 1-202-685-7000


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