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Acas wins top award for mediation

Thursday 11 December 2014

A senior figure from workplace experts Acas has won a top award for mediation. The Civil Mediation Council (CMC) has awarded its Lord Slynn prize to former Acas Chief Conciliator Peter Harwood.

The prize is awarded annually to a person that the CMC feels has contributed most notably to the development of mediation in the United Kingdom.

Peter Harwood retired from Acas in September 2014 after 28 years of service at Acas. During his time at Acas, he was well known for his work in both individual and collective mediation.

Acas Chief Executive Anne Sharp said:

"Congratulations to Peter on this award. It recognises his distinguished contribution and Acas' crucial role in helping resolve workplace conflict in the UK.

"Peter has been an outstanding practitioner and champion of mediation during his time as Chief Conciliator at Acas. His exemplary skills will be missed but his successor, David Prince, has already picked up where he left off in leading Acas work to help resolve conflict in UK workplaces."

The Chief Conciliator at Acas is responsible for resolving national industrial disputes and Peter's achievements include the Lindsay oil refinery dispute in 2009, the fuel tanker drivers dispute in 2012, Royal Mail in 2013 as well as averting a transport dispute in the run to the London Olympics in 2012.

Chief Conciliator David Prince said:

"I worked very closely with Peter on dispute prevention and resolution during the 2012 London and Olympic Games. His hard work with the various bus companies and the parties involved ensured a strike-free Olympics for London.

"Successful mediation is almost a science and an art that requires patience, assertiveness as well as subtle influencing skills to get the parties involved in a dispute to voluntarily reach an agreement to end their conflict. Peter epitomised what Acas mediators do best and I'm proud to continue his legacy."

Research has shown that Acas' collective conciliation work brings a very significant benefit to the economy, assessed as £76 for every £1 spent. This is because of the potential impact in society as a whole when disputes are not resolved.

For more information about Acas' mediation and conciliation services, please visit www.acas.org.uk/disputes.

Notes to Editors

  1. In 2009, in memory of the CMC President, Lord Slynn of Hadley, the CMC announced the creation of the annual Lord Slynn Prize. The prize is for the person who has, in the opinion of the Officers of the CMC, contributed most notably to the development of mediation in the United Kingdom. Lord Slynn of Hadley was known as a great jurist and voice for mediation. See more information about the prize.
  2. Acas stands for Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service. We aim to improve organisations and working life through better employment relations. We help with employment relations by supplying up-to-date information, independent advice and high quality training, and working with employers and employees to solve problems and improve performance. Acas is an independent and impartial statutory body governed by a Council made up of members from business, trade unions, academia and the law. For more information, see About us.
  3. For media enquiries or interview requests for an Acas spokesperson please contact Shumon Rahman, Senior Media and PR Manager on 0207 210 3688 / srahman@acas.org.uk. For out of hours media enquiries please call the out of hours duty press officer on 020 7210 3600.