23J: The role of mediation in the next general elections

What do the different parties say in relation to mediation in their electoral programs?

These days, there are many and diverse topics that are discussed related to the candidates presented in Spain for the general elections that will be held on July 23, 2023 (see: unemployment, taxes, economy, health, education , housing, pensions, social policies, livestock and agriculture, industry, tourism, energy, environment, water, infrastructure, mobility, immigration, justice, foreign policy, defense, state model, culture, feminism, lgtbiq+, life and family, conciliation, depopulation...) and, as Mediation School, we have asked ourselves what the different parties say in relation to mediation in their electoral programs?


After consulting them, we found the following in them:

In the area of education are committed to promoting organizational structures specialized in coexistence from models of restorative conflict management, incorporating the Student Helpers and School Mediation Programs in educational centers, defending that the educational system can contribute decisively, among other issues, to mediation and resolution peaceful resolution of conflicts and, thereby, promote the development of global citizenship committed to the challenges of the 21st century.

For its part, the scope of the justice, it is said that they will promote Mediation and a Restorative Justice approach as an appropriate instrument for conflict resolution and to facilitate agreement.

Within its objective of promoting a justice up to the European commitments, the approval of a Comprehensive Law on Alternative Means of Conflict Management with the commitment to promote its use, promoting both judicial and extrajudicial mediation, administrative and family mediation, as well as arbitration in the civil and commercial sphere, among other instruments.

Focused on Familiar scope, are committed to offering measures in favor of family mediation, providing support to families to resolve conflict situations, always taking into consideration the best interests of the minor.

It has the program where the word mediation appears the most times, the points in which something related to it is included are the following:

  • In relation to the energy system, the creation of a public mediation agency that guarantees that the territories where renewable energies are installed are informed and listened to in a participatory consultation process that includes , to the extent possible, the interests and demands of the various actors in the area.
  • When the protection of the rights of boys and girls and their families, talks about the organization of mediation teams specialized in conflict resolution in the different areas where the social life of children develops.
  • As for the model of justice, one of the commitments is to promote alternative conflict resolution mechanisms to decongest it and move towards less adversarial models of resolution, facilitating - among others - access to mediation, with professional public mediators that all citizens can access. They propose the creation of local public pre-procedural mediation bodies (with professional staff specialized in various matters, sufficient means and executive force of the agreements and mediations achieved without the need for subsequent judicial ratification), which can be accessed through those affected or by indication of the competent judicial body.
  • Within the security and prevention policies, The articulation of a state network for community resolution of minor conflicts is contemplated, strengthening the sense of shared responsibility and belonging to the civic community. To this end, they are committed to promoting mediation networks in neighborhoods and towns, investing in administrative structures, civil society, and figures other than the State security forces and bodies, such as mediation professionals who are provided with stability, salaries dignity, and means to prevent, manage, intervene and resolve problems of coexistence and social conflict in a mediated way. This also entails training and reorganizing the police so that they can support the work of these professionals.
  • Focused on the problems of youth groups, there is talk of professionalizing mediation figures by incorporating people from youth groups as young liaisons between the groups and other social agents, as well as intergroup mediators.
  • When talking about his program international, under the premise that Spain has the enormous responsibility and capacity to become part of the solution to the problems, defending the potential of our country to become a reference for mediation and pointing out the need for more mediation and coordination tools, in the face of increasing conflicts. To this end, your commitment is:
  • Adopt a more active role in mediation and peaceful and dialogue-based resolution in conflicts in which Spanish diplomacy has added value, such as those in Western Sahara, Palestine, Colombia, Haiti, Ukraine or the Sahel.
  • Promote the creation of a mediation and conflict resolution unit within the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and promote an international mediation network with the prominent participation of global civil society and non-state agents.
  • When mentioning the spaces for culture and coexistence, refers to the enhancement of practices in the field of mediation, the culture of proximity and community culture.
  • When considering the Pact of Education and culture, are committed to proposing the organization of cultural education and mediation as a professional field, which requires recognition and a specific labor agreement.

Among the commitments contained in your electoral program related to mediation are 1) promoting criminal mediation and restorative justice; 2) promote a law on mediation that improves the current conditions for its application to Catalonia, the Valencian Community and the Balearic Islands; 3) ensure the full effectiveness of alternative conflict resolution systems - including mediation - in consumer matters; or 4) base labor relations on collective bargaining and mediation, social dialogue and recognition of the parties, as the main axis of the Catalan labor relations framework.

It contemplates promoting legislative changes for the recognition of mediation and ADR in the judicial solution of conflicts, as well as that mediation and ADR agreements can be judicially approved if the parties request it. They also talk about the need to establish by law the recognition of fees for lawyers and attorneys when they intervene in these types of procedures, and that cases resolved through mediation and ADR receive the same remuneration as judicialized cases. The recognition of these fees is defended as a fair and necessary solution to encourage the option of mediation and ADR among legal professionals.

Your program mentions the following priority objective in terms of justice: Promote mechanisms for extrajudicial conflict resolution, a more agile alternative route with lower costs than judicial means, through a firm commitment to arbitration and family mediation.

For its part, in the electoral programs of PDeCAT, PNV, EH BILDU, CUP, CC, UPN, BNG and Teruel ExistsExcept for error or omission in the analysis carried out, there is no express mention of mediation.


What will happen with mediation in Spain from June 23?

Aside from the commitments contained in the different electoral programs analyzed, the truth is that the destiny of the mediation It cannot be left in the hands of politics, but those primarily responsible for its promotion, dissemination and implementation in different areas are professional mediators.

Mediation advances thanks to the fact that there are trained people, who know and are convinced of what this method of conflict management provides, and who opt for this path, regardless of the support it receives from the Public administration. However, it is evident that the inclusion of proposals related to mediation in the public sphere should be valued positively.

This is why we understand that knowing what is proposed by political parties regarding mediation should not lead us to wait for others to act for us, even though the information obtained may be useful for the mediators. and mediators we can demand in the future the fulfillment of the commitments made by those who come to hold power.

Let's celebrate that there is talk of mediation and let's try to get mediation done, but let's never stop fighting to be the ones who champion the different initiatives that emerge.

Following Machado's wise words, “Walker, there is no path, the path is made by walking.”

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