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Date: Monday, July 18, 2022
Time: 9:30 am – 1:00 pm
In-Person: 3rd Floor, Law Society Building, 196-198 Water Street
Online: Via Zoom

Seminar Overview

Dispute resolution processes are now recognized as mainstream processes, as opposed to alternative processes, that take pressure off the courts and increase access to justice. Duties to use dispute resolution processes are incorporated into legislation and lawyers’ Codes of Ethics. The spectrum of processes ranges from collaborative negotiation to mediation, med-arb, and arbitration before arriving at the adversarial end of the spectrum – litigation.

Six presentations will explore current themes in the practice of dispute resolution across various fields of law while highlighting how dispute resolution processes take pressure off the courts, as well as provide a cost-effective and deeper level of satisfaction to clients:

  1. “Unconscious Bias in Dispute Resolution: A Primer” by Pia Hundal  LL.B, LL.M.
  2. “An Indigenous Lawyer’s work in Dispute Resolution” by Shayne Mcdonald Q.C., B.A, M.B.A., LL.B.
  3. “Introducing the Trauma Informed Dispute Resolution Toolbox” by Jonathan Tieman LL.B, LL.M
  4. “Power Imbalances, Abuse and Coercion:  Substantive Learning on How To Identify And Respond To Issues” by Mina Vaish, LL.M., B. Comm, AccFM
  5. “Med-Arb, Evaluative Mediation, and Other Cost-Saving Alternatives to Litigation: the Case for Adjudicator-led Mediation” by Amanda Rogers LL.B., LL.M.
  6. “Access to Alternative Justice:  An Alberta Perspective”. By Marilyn D. Slawinsky LL.M., Justice of the Court of Queen’s Bench of Alberta

The rich roster of six presenters from across Canada brings extensive experience using dispute resolution processes in family law, wills and estates, indigenous law, labour and employment law, workplace investigations, public policy, and court administration.

“Unconscious Bias in Dispute Resolution: A Primer”
Pia Hundal  LL.B, LL.M.

Pia Hundal, is a partner in Miller Thomson LLP’s Litigation and Dispute Resolution group in Toronto. Pia’s practice focuses on estate and trust litigation, including will challenges, will interpretation, passing of accounts applications, dependent’s support claims, power of attorney disputes, guardianships, trust litigation and alternative dispute resolution. Pia works to resolve disputes in the most cost-effective manner and has a great deal of experience as a lawyer assisting her clients in resolving disputes at mediation. She also has extensive litigation experience, including work on major trials and arbitrations, and has made countless appearances in the Ontario Superior Court of Justice. Pia’s expertise has been recognized by Best Lawyers in Canada.

“An Indigenous Lawyer’s work in Dispute Resolution”
Shayne McDonald Q.C., (B.A, M.B.A., Ll.B)

Shayne McDonald Q.C. was called to the bar of Newfoundland and Labrador in 1994. He is a Senior Associate at Goss Gilroy Inc. and Director of Partner Engagement and Legal Affairs at Aboriginal Employment Services (AES). Shayne holds a B.A., a LL.B and a Master’s degree in Business Administration. He specializes in Indigenous law, Corporate Law and Governance, and Alternate Dispute Resolution.  He has over 20 years of experience providing legal and consulting services to a variety of organizations. He is a member of Miapukek First Nation, where he was Director of Justice and Legal Advisor to the MFN Band Council for 20 years. At GGI, Shayne conducts Workplace Investigations into allegations of workplace harassment. He has done several Workplace Reviews and Assessments that have centered on assisting management with implementing organizational change and successfully managing stakeholder input and concerns. 

“Introducing the Trauma-Informed Dispute Resolution Toolbox”
Jonathan Tieman LL.B, LL.M

This presentation will provide a brief introduction to the concept of trauma informed practice: how participants in dispute resolution processes may be impacted by traumatic experiences; and provide suggested modifications to dispute resolution processes to better assist persons impacted by trauma, to resolve disputes.

Jonathan Tieman is a lawyer with a general practice of law in Brooks and Medicine Hat, Alberta. His main areas of practice include child representation, family disputes and mediation. He recently completed his Master of Laws with a specialisation in Dispute Resolution from Osgoode Hall Law School. Jonathan is also a sessional instructor at Medicine Hat College, where he just entered his 15th year of teaching.

Jonathan in passionate about assisting families in resolving their disputes in non-adversarial processes with a focus on putting children first and allowing children’s voices to be heard. He, however, often reluctantly appears in all levels of court in Alberta including Alberta Provincial Court, Alberta Court of Queen’s Bench and Alberta’s Court of Appeal. Jonathan is an active volunteer in the Alberta legal community as well as with several local organizations. He is an active member of the Alberta Chapter of the Association of Family and Conciliation Courts and sits on the executive as Board Treasurer; President of the Sanare Centre (Southeaster Alberta Sexual Assault Response Committee); Treasurer of Saamis Immigration Services Association, and board member of Canadian Humanitarian.

“Power Imbalances, Abuse and Coercion: Substantive Learning On How To Identify And Respond To Issues”
-Mina Vaish, LL.M., B. Comm, AccFM

Power imbalances, abusive behaviour and coercion can negatively impact your client’s negotiation abilities, even when represented by counsel.   Especially prevalent in cases involving past, present or future relationships such as in family, employment, estate law, such issues should be identified and responded to for effective advocacy and representation.

Legal practitioners will learn how to use specific questions and screening skills to identify issues of concern that may impact your client’s ability to effectively negotiate in ADR processes.   Lawyers will also learn how to effectively respond to disclosures of family violence.  The segment will include a substantive overview of Justice Canada’s HELP Toolkit for family lawyers (

Mina Vaish is a Toronto-based mediator and global peacebuilder with 16 years of full-time experience in mediation. She is the Managing Director of York Mediation, GTA Centre for Mediation and Mediation Training (workplace, human rights, commercial and family) and has significant experience with court-connected mediation services: she is Director of Operations for Peel Region, one of the largest family mediation court-connected programs in the province. She has acted as a specialized consultant for workplace dispute resolution process design, has designed curriculum for health and medical applications in conflict resolution, and is an international trainer in conflict resolution, mediation, and dialogue.

Mina is active with international mediation efforts, including capacity and skills building, and advocacy for mediation at the United Nations. She is the Chair of the Women in Mediation for Mediators Beyond Borders International, has served as the delegate chair of the MBBI delegation to UN Women’s Commission on the Status of Women for the past 6 years, and has helped organize several panels and workshops featuring women mediators. Mina is chairing a new Canadian panel of peace mediators aimed at developing a multidisciplinary team of peace mediation guidance, resources, and research for regional, national and international conflict.

Mina is a faculty member of the International Peace Training Institute (IPTI) of MBBI, and occasional faculty member at Osgoode Hall Law School Professional Development, Riverdale Mediation and York Mediation Training Institute for Conflict Resolution.  Mina holds a Master of Laws from Osgoode Hall Law School with a specialization in Dispute Resolution and a business degree from Concordia University.

“Med-Arb, Evaluative Mediation, and Other Cost-Saving Alternatives to Litigation: the Case for Adjudicator-led Mediation”
Amanda Rogers LL.B., LL.M.

Amanda Rogers is an Arbitrator, Mediator, and Lawyer residing in Vancouver, British Columbia, specializing in workplace dispute resolution, alongside her colleague Vince Ready. Since becoming a neutral in 2019, Amanda has been appointed on numerous disputes in BC, Saskatchewan, NT, NU, and under federal jurisdiction—publishing numerous decisions and settling many more cases through mediation. She is on the roster of arbitrators in BC, is named as an arbitrator in numerous collective agreements, and acts as an external adjudicator for the Canada Industrial Relations Board.

Amanda is a strong proponent of alternate dispute resolution and brings a pragmatic and transparent lens to every dispute to help facilitate resolution through fair and efficient means. Amanda has a particular passion and interest in mediating collective bargaining disputes. In this capacity, Amanda has been appointed as a Special Mediator by the Governments of Saskatchewan and BC as well as worked as a privately appointed mediator in numerous disputes. Amanda was appointed as an Industrial Inquiry Commissioner for the Government of BC, publishing a report with recommendations on changes to union successorship rights in BC’s forestry industry.

Outside of the labour relations context, Amanda has been hired as a mediator by private parties for disputes arising in an array of contexts—from shareholder agreements, business transactions, and organization strife. She enjoys the diversity these cases bring to her practice. In 2020, Amanda was appointed by the Government of Yukon as an Independent Reviewer into complaints about its handling of sexual abuses incidents in a public school. Her subsequent report and recommendations were fully accepted by Government.

Amanda graduated from the University of Toronto with an honours B.A (2003). a J.D. (2007) and completed a Master of Law (LL.M.) specializing in Dispute Resolution at Osgoode Hall Law School, York University in 2021.

“Access to Alternative Justice: An Alberta Perspective”
Marilyn D. Slawinsky LL.M., Justice of the Court of Queen’s Bench of Alberta

This presentation outlines the various court-connected alternative dispute resolution processes available to Alberta litigants, and the role that the judiciary can play in facilitating settlement.  The positive benefits that dispute resolution can bring to all justice system participants will also be discussed.

Madam Justice Marilyn D. Slawinsky was appointed a judge of the Provincial Court of Alberta in September 2015, and was elevated to the Court of Queen’s Bench of Alberta in March, 2017.  She holds a B.Sc. in Chemistry from Brandon University, a J.D. from the University of Manitoba, and an LL.M. in Dispute Resolution from York University. She maintained a private practice in Red Deer for twenty-four years, primarily in the areas of family law, wills and estates, estate litigation, and personal injury. During this time, Madam Justice Slawinsky increasingly incorporated alternative dispute resolution into her practice, becoming a registered family mediator and practicing collaborative family law for over 10 years.

From 2012 to 2015, Justice Slawinsky held managerial roles within Alberta Justice, overseeing the delivery of dispute resolution services and programming. She then became Interim Public Complaint Director and Legal Counsel to the Calgary Police Commission, before her appointment to the bench.

Facilitator: Rhona Buchan

Rhona Buchan LL.B, LL.M, has been a lawyer in NL for 21 years. She is a Senior Associate at Goss Gilroy Inc., and principal at Rhona M. Buchan. She practised with Legal Aid NL for 20 years, during which time she litigated criminal and family law cases at all levels of court throughout all regions of Newfoundland and Labrador. She has held the positions of Area Director managing the Secondary Conflict Office of Legal Aid NL, Staff Solicitor, and Duty Counsel at the Supreme Court of NL Family Division. Rhona has developed conflict resolution skills that she now uses in her capacity as a neutral, third-party facilitator of dispute resolution processes.

Rhona holds an LL.M. in Dispute Resolution from Osgoode Hall Law School; an LL.B from the University of Ottawa; a B.A. (first class) from Memorial University, and a Diploma in Theatre (Performance) from Toronto Metro University (formerly Ryerson).  Her areas of focus include conflict analysis, process design and the spectrum of dispute resolution theory and practice. Rhona has done Workplace Investigations for public and private agencies.  She is a Mediator, trained at Riverdale Mediation and the Family Dispute Resolution Institute of Ontario, with specialized training in the areas of Advanced Family Mediation, Family Arbitration and Screening for interpersonal violence and power imbalances. Rhona is the founding Chair of FDRIA, the Family Dispute Resolution Institute, Atlantic section.


Registration Fee:   $230.00 ($200.00 + HST)       HST # R108086463

Registration Includes:

  1. Seminar attendance and materials
  2. Lunch and light refreshments (for in-person attendees)


After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing the information you will need to join the seminar.

In-person attendance is subject to capacity restrictions and other measures/policies imposed by the Law Society, the Chief Medical Officer, and any other applicable governmental authority. In-person attendance, if permitted, will be approved according to the order in which payment is received.


CPD Credit:   3.5 hours