Educating Legislators – Mediators Visit the Capitol of VA 2018

On January 24 Delegate Michael Webert welcomed PDRC Executive Director Lawrie Parker and volunteer Lisa Barkema to the general assembly.  In 2012 Delegate Webert successfully sponsored legislation to expand the Neighborhood Assistance Program (NAP) enabling volunteer mediators to receive Virginia tax credits for their service.

Lawrie & Lisa with Del.

Mediators from the Virginia Mediation Network, the Virginia Association for Community Conflict Resolution and Dispute Resolution Services from the Office of the Supreme Court were recognized by Delegate David Toscano from the House floor.

inside House floor

Mediators spent the day seeing their legislators and educating new legislators about mediation and how it can be used for constituent concerns.


VA House of Delegates Recognizes Mediators

On February 7, 2017 a group of mediators organized by the Virginia Mediation Network and the Virginia Mediation Network met at the Capitol to educate lawmakers about mediation and to invite them to refer appropriate constituent concerns to mediators.  It was a great day.

On House floor







Keep Calm buttons









Delegate Christopher Peace (Hanover) recognized the mediators from the House Floor.  The video of that introduction is below.

Mediators visit the capitol

VA’s 2016 General Assembly Gives Boost to Mediation

During the 2016 Virginia General Assembly session legislators considered and passed legislation important to mediators across Virginia.

The Code of Virginia currently states that court-appointed mediators in family cases receive a flat fee of $100 for a mediation. This amount did not reflect the amount of work that goes into these mediations and the time required for the administrative matters surrounding the mediation. This amount has also remained the same for the last 15 years.

Bills were introduced to increase the fee from $100 to $120 and to treat custody appointments as separate appointments from support appointments for purposes of payment.

Virginia’s legislators recognized the value of mediation and voted overwhelmingly to increase funding for mediators to $120 (at least for the next two years) and to pay cases that involve support separate from cases involving custody/visitation.

This effort was the culmination of two years of hard work by the Mediator Compensation Task Force (MCTF), which is made up of members from the Virginia Mediation Network and the Virginia Association of Community Conflict Resolution (VACCR) along with representatives from Dispute Resolution Services of the Office of the Executive Secretary.  The Virginia Bar Association lent the use of its lobbyist to help make the legislative request successful.


The support for this initiative from mediators and mediation supporters across the state also played an important role in the success of the initiative.

Giving Children in VA the Two-Parent Advantage

Free mediation sessions and co-parenting classes are being offered to parents who have open cases with the Department of Child Support Enforcement.  The goal of this program is to give children the benefit of having both parents involved in their lives.

Mediation services will give parents the opportunity to sit with an impartial neutral to develop plans for spending time with the child(ren).   Even tricky topics such as how time with the child(ren) will be divided over the holidays can be tackled.

Co-parenting classes will give parents information and tools to effectively communicate with each other and share parenting responsibilities.  Funding for this program is made available through the Department of Social Services’ Access and Visitation grant program.


To get access to the mediation program, both parents need to be willing to mediate a parenting plan.   Also, current contact information for both parents needs to be available.   Parents who meet these criteria should call VACCR’s main telephone number 888-VA PEACE to connect to the closest center offering the services.  Or centers can be reached directly at the numbers below:


ReSOLUTIONS, Woodstock                                                                          (540) 459-8799

Better Agreements, Inc. Blacksburg                                                        (540) 552-1200

CMG Foundation, Richmond                                                                       (804) 254-2664

Conflict Resolution Center @ Children’s Trust, Roanoke                 (540) 342-2063 ext. 24

FairField Center, Harrisonburg                                                                   (540) 434-0059 ext. 1

Mediation Center of Charlottesville                                                         (434) 977-2926

NVMS (Northern Virginia Mediation Service)                                      (703) 865-7263

Piedmont Dispute Resolution Center, Warrenton                                                     (540) 347-6650

Peaceful Alternatives Community Mediation, Amherst                 (434) 929-8224

The Up Center, Portsmouth                                                              (757) 397-2121 ext. 332

Landlord Tenant Mediation


The Virginia Association for Community Conflict Resolution’s 30-second video on landlord tenant mediation encourages the use of mediation to settle landlord tenant disputes.  In mediation landlords and tenants can take the time to understand each other’s situation and perspective.  Unlike in court, they can craft  workable payment plans if money is owed.  It is amazing how mediation can positively alter the relationship between a landlord and tenant. To get more information on using mediation, contact one of the centers listed on this site, go to or call 1-888-VAPEACE


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