Family Mediation - What is shuttle mediation? (Do we have to sit in a room together?)
Shuttle mediation is so called because the mediator will "shuttle" between the participants to the mediation who remain in different rooms who usually do not communicate with each other save through the mediator.
Shuttle mediation is quite common in commercial mediations which are often between companies.
It is less common in family mediation.
Most family mediation is by joint meetings - that is both parties sit in a room together with the mediator and all three people communicating with each other. This can be face to face or via video conference.
Sometimes shuttle mediation is necessary.
This can be for a number of reasons:
There can be a number of benefits to sitting in a room together even if you are not that keen. Mainly you get to hear what the other person says,"From the horse's mouth." You can also observe body language and facial expression. If you are in separate rooms, you have to rely on the Mediator to try to explain to you the other person's point of view and explain what your wishes are. Being in the same room also means there is no need to repeat what the other person has said as you will hear each other, and no time spent walking between rooms. Shuttle mediation also inevitably leaves each person on their own as the mediator moves between each room.
The top priority is to have a safe and effective mediation and the mediator will spend time discussing your needs and what you feel comfortable with.