International Family Mediation is being increasingly encouraged by legal and administrative State authorities to resolve cross-border family disputes. Thus, it is becoming apparent that clear, overarching principles for International Family Mediation are necessary to ensure the highest standards of practice among international family mediators around the world.
A Collaborative Process was initiated in 2015 to draft an international Charter applicable to all States. This Charter complements Codes of Conduct and Charters that were elaborated regionally or among existing networks. The nature of this Charter is to serve and reflect the great variety of international family mediation practices around the world. All existing structures relevant to International Family Mediation are participating in the creation of this overarching document of reference.
The Charter for International Family Mediation Processescontains 10 core principles to be respected during cross-border mediations. These principles can be seen as a tool to disseminate general knowledge about the recourse. More significantly, parents engaging in mediation can become informed about the necessary standards of practice and be assured that mediation is effective in safeguarding their rights. Examples of good practices will complement this list of principles and demonstrate their applicable nature.
A How to Use sets recommendations for an increased cooperation between administrative and legal authorities and specialised mediation structures.
ISS General Secretariat plays the role of facilitator and coordinator, and has the privilege to bring together all specialised structures and networks as well as independent professional mediators working for public services or within the ISS network. These mediators are specialists in cross-border family conflicts and come from around the globe to exchange expertise, multi-cultural perspectives, experiences, and lessons learned in issues of training, deontology and general practice.
The Charter lays a foundation for the development of international cooperation among family mediation practitioners specialising in cross-border conflicts as well as legal and administrative authorities. The end goal is to pave the way for the creation of one centralised and reliable network of qualified practitioners, recognised and accessible to all.
The creation of a global network of professionals will help families access mediators specialised in cross-border family conflicts. ISS wants to gather mediation professionals from all continents to establish jointly an accreditation system which guarantees standards of professional conduct.