Source: (2002) Cardozo Women’s Law Journal. 8: 235.
Sarah Krieger points to the increasing use of alternative methods of dispute resolution in family law cases to promote efficient justice and to serve family relations better. For Krieger, as she argues in this essay, the trend in favor of mediation leads to the re-privatization of family law, thus resulting in a setback to the political and legislative progress of the battered womenâ€™s movement. To make her argument, Krieger examines the effects of mandatory mediation in family law cases involving domestic violence. Mandatory mediation, she states, has an overall negative impact on gender relations in general, and in specific on the progress of securing legislative rights and protection for battered women. In her essay she sketches a brief history of domestic violence, and its nature and effects; defines and explains alternative dispute resolution; discusses the inappropriateness of domestic violence victim and batterer participation in mediation; looks at legislative responses in certain states; and questions the training of mediators and their screening processes for domestic violence as inadequate for dealing with cases of domestic violence.