The Access to Justice Board selected Resolution Washington to receive the 2019 Access to Justice Community Leadership Award for “playing a strategic, significant and courageous leadership role in improving access to the justice system.” Resolution Washington’s member Dispute Resolution Centers across the state provide conflict resolution services and expertise accessible to all Washington residents.
For over 30 years Dispute Resolution Centers (DRCs) have focused on delivering effective and free or low-cost conflict resolution services in collaboration with the courts and for the public. DRCs empower individuals and communities to solve disputes and gain skills through voluntary approaches while supporting self-determination, informed decision-making, and collaboration.
Every DRC offers mediation, facilitation, training and mediator certification, public education, and programs tailored to meet their community’s needs. Programs include parent-teen and civil court mediation, restorative practices in schools, and facilitation of community dialogues around urban development. Several centers address the housing crisis by providing training for housing counselors and negotiating among landlords and tenants to prevent homelessness.
DRCs serve all Washington residents, including low income clients. They adapt their approaches according to local needs, such as Spanish language services for Latinx communities and unique collaborations with Tribes. DRCs are nonprofit organizations authorized under the Revised Code of Washington 7.75, which governs their structure and activities. Since 1984, 21 DRCs have been established to provide dispute resolution, mediation and training services to communities. In 2018 DRCs served 80,398 Washington residents and engaged 40,976 hours of volunteer service statewide.
The Access to Justice Board is charged by the Washington Supreme Court to establish, coordinate and oversee a statewide, integrated, non-duplicative, civil legal delivery system that is responsive to the needs of poor, vulnerable and moderate means individuals. Resolution Washington appreciates this recognition for their long-time work and ongoing commitment to support effective conflict resolution and provide access to justice statewide. The award will be conveyed formally at the Access to Justice Conference in Spokane on June 16, 2019.
Resolution Washington is Washington’s association of independent, nonprofit Dispute Resolution Centers (DRCs) across the state that provide affordable conflict resolution services and expertise. More information can be found at www.resolutionwa.org.