Over many years, FDR organizations have tried to get traction with the government for the regulation approach to family mediation and they were not interested. As a result, self-regulating FDR organizations have developed comprehensive practice standards, set expectations for training – including domestic violence and power imbalance training, set high certification requirements and a complaints process to protect the public.


On June 22 2021, an article titled Mediation: The unregulated profession written by Gary Joseph was published in The Lawyers Daily. In the article, Mr. Joseph opines that poorly trained mediators are plentiful leading to uninformed participants, sometimes coerced by mediators, into settlements that are unfair and contrary to the legislation. His answer, a regulated college of mediators.


While FDRIO agrees with some of what Mr. Joseph said, we have considerable concerns with what he omitted. To contribute to the discussion, we submitted our perspective – Holistic standards for unregulated profession of mediation


FDRIO’s was not the only response to Mr. Joseph’s article:

Ontario Association of Family Mediators Family mediation: The self-regulated profession

Hilary Linton, Riverdale Mediation   Ontario family mediation: World class excellence

Mr. Joseph replied to these three articles – Ontario family law needs a college of mediators

And Rachel Birnbaum, Ph.D., RSW, LL.M, also weighed in:   Titles/Names and regulated professions: What’s all this fuss about?


We strongly encourage you to read these papers. There are important points in each of them that need to be considered for the future of the profession. What is clear, we have a lot of work to do!


We should be clear:

All practicing mediators should be fully trained! Including screening for domestic violence and power imbalance!

All practicing mediators should be certified! The public deserves to have an easy marker for professional competence.

All practicing mediators should be attached to an organization that provides continued education and a complaint process that protects the public.


The FDRIO Advocacy Committee has taken on this work and will be working to move the discussions forward. We look forward to more debate, and encourage you to become involved….

Interested in the Advocacy Committee? Please contact our co-chairs Jennifer Daudlin or Julie Gill to find out more!