Mediation Services helps labour and management resolve disputes in collective bargaining negotiations. Legislation requires mediation before parties can legally strike or lock out.
Unions and employers that have a collective bargaining relationship, as well as representatives, researchers and other Labour Relations Practitioners, can access the dispute resolution services provided by Mediation Services.
Either side in a collective bargaining process can request a mediator. The request is reviewed to ensure the criteria are met for the appointment of a mediator.
Step 1. Apply for a mediation
Any time after serving notice to bargain, either or both parties to the collective agreement may apply for the appointment of a mediator by completing and submitting this form to the Director of Mediation Services.
Step 2. Appoint a mediator
Once the application is approved, a mediator is appointed from the Designated Mediator Roster.
Step 3. Mediation begins
Once an appointment is made, the mediator arranges meetings with the parties to deal with the issues in dispute.
The mediator works with the parties to help them reach a collective agreement.
If agreement cannot be reached, the parties may proceed to further actions permitted under the Labour Relations Code.
|First 2 days of mediation
||Free (excludes non-code referrals)|
|Third and subsequent days of mediation, daily rate applies
||$200 (plus GST) per hour, to a maximum of $2,400 (plus GST) per day.
Designated Mediator Roster
Approved list of mediators for appointment by Mediation Services.
Mr. Mark Asbell (North)
Asbell Dispute Resolutions Inc.
PO Box 92551
Sherwood Park, Alberta T8A 3X4
Mark Asbell, K.C. is an Arbitrator, Mediator and Adjudicator. With 17 years of experience as Chair of the Alberta Labour Relations Board and experience as a consensually appointed arbitrator and mediator, Mark is a nationally recognized leader in labour law and labour dispute adjudication. He is a prolific writer generating over 700 decisions during his career with the Alberta Labour Relations Board, including decisions tested and affirmed at both the Alberta Court of Appeal and the Supreme Court of Canada.
Over his adjudicative career, Mark has developed a reputation as a courteous, efficient adjudicator with superior hearing management skills who is able to quickly hone the essence of the dispute while providing a forum where the parties feel heard and respected.
While adjudication may be the necessary end-point, Mark’s true passion is facilitating party-driven settlement, and trust and respect for ongoing relationships. As Chair of the Alberta Labour Relations Board, Mark developed and implemented the first-of-its-kind settlement conferences and processes by utilizing various alternative dispute resolution models responsive to the circumstances of the dispute followed, where necessary, by adjudication. Through the use of these alternative dispute resolution initiatives, the Alberta Labour Relations Board’s settlement rate improved from an average of 35% annually to as high as 80% per annum. This model has since been adopted by several adjudicative boards across Canada and has been studied and discussed at national and international academic conferences. Mark personally assisted in mediating or helping resolve over 200 disputes under these processes.
Admitted to the Law Society of Alberta in 1985, Mark practiced labour & employment, contract, personal injury, and First Nation’s law with the Edmonton based boutique law firm of Ackroyd, Piasta, Roth & Day. As an adjudicator, Mark has served as a consensually appointed arbitrator, Chair (1999-2016) and Vice-Chair (1991-1996) with the Alberta Labour Relations Board, Alternate Chair with the Public Service Employee Relations Board (1993-1995), and an arbitrator for the Canadian Centre for Sport and Law (1997-2000). Mark was appointed by the Law Society of Alberta as an Adjudicator for Conduct Hearings in February 2016. Mark’s varied experience both practicing law and adjudicating includes addressing issues within broad based disputes in the public, education, health, construction, transportation, retail, and manufacturing sectors as well as individual matters involving First Nations’ interests under the Canada Labour Code, complaints against lawyers, and doping allegations and disciplinary actions involving amateur and Olympic athletes.
In addition to being a regular speaker and presenter at universities, colleges, conferences, seminars, and workshops, Mark is an active community volunteer, having served or continuing to serve on many local, provincial, and national charity and athletic boards. In addition to coaching youth hockey and basketball, he holds or has held the highest certification levels as a nationally certified referee and coach in Lacrosse. He continues to coach Junior Lacrosse and serves on the Board of Directors for the Sherwood Park Titans Major Lacrosse Association. In recognition of his contributions to the community, Mark was awarded the Paul Harris Fellowship Medal in 2004, the Queen’s Jubilee Medal in 2005, and appointed Queen’s Counsel in 2008.
Ms. Deborah Howes (North)
High Clouds Incorporated
34 Street Business Centre
3438 78 Avenue
Edmonton, Alberta T6B 2X9
Deborah has a Bachelor of Arts and an LL.B. from the University of Alberta and a Certificate in Conflict Management from the Alberta Arbitration and Mediation Society. She is a Chartered Arbitrator and Chartered Mediator and holds the designation of Fellow of the Canadian Condominium Institute. Deborah has over 25 years’ experience in labour relations and conflict resolution. Between May 1991 and May 2002 Deborah served as a Vice-Chair with the Alberta Labour Relations Board. Currently Deborah is the President of High Clouds Incorporated, an Edmonton based company focusing on seminars and dispute resolution services for labour relations, condominium, real estate, commercial and administrative agencies. She is an instructor for the Foundation of Administrative Justice and was an instructor for the Alberta Arbitration and Mediation Society and the University of Lethbridge. Deborah is a member of the ADR Institute of Canada.
Mr. Alan Konkin (North)
Konkin and Associates Inc.
Contact information and calendar
Mr. Konkin’s business career has provided him with experience in all facets of Human Resources and Negotiations, Arbitrations, Mediations, Strategic Planning, Administration, Public Relations, Finance, Budgeting and Investing. Mr. Konkin set up his consulting company, Konkin and Associates Inc. to specialize in providing solutions for Labor Relations and Human Resources issues. He has extensive experience in the prevention and resolution of labour disputes and has been the lead negotiator at a number of bargaining tables. Mr. Konkin’s participation also includes grievance mediation, harassment investigation, and a broad range of experience as a mediator, negotiator and as a labour relations practitioner in a number of industries. Mr. Konkin has served on numerous pension plan and health and wellness boards as a Member or Director, as a Trustee on Joint Labor Management Health and Wellness and Pension plans, and as a Trustee on a Union Pension and Health and Wellness plan. Mr. Konkin was also a Board member of the Alberta Arbitration Mediation Society (2001-2003) and served as a Board Member on the Alberta Labour Relations Board (2011-2015) resolving conflict situations and administering and interpreting labour relations legislation.
Mr. Bruce Moffatt (North)
Bruce Moffatt is a seasoned labour relations professional with thirty years’ experience as a union leader and management Human Resource/Labour Relations specialist. Bruce has led more than 100 different negotiations during his career. He has successfully led negotiations with the industrial, pipeline, road-building and specialty construction sectors, construction material supply, municipalities, education, healthcare, senior’s lodges, manufacturing, transportation, mining, oil sands, repair shops, equipment dealers and food processing. Bruce was the Chair of a Health and Welfare and Pension Trust and sat on the Board of the Alberta Construction Safety Association. Bruce has been a member of the Labour Relations Board for the last eight years. He was also board member and Vice-Chair of the Canadian Board of the International Foundation of Employee Benefit Plans which is dedicated to improving the governance of Trusts and education of Trustees. Bruce has dedicated his career to working with others to find creative solutions to complex problems and worked with an interest-based negotiation focus whenever possible.
Ms. Mia Norrie (North)
Norrie & Co. Professional Services Inc.
Contact information and calendar
Ms. Norrie is a human resources and labour relations consultant with over 20 years’ experience based in Edmonton, Alberta. She holds a Bachelor of Arts and an L.L.B from the University of Alberta. Ms. Norrie has had the unique opportunity to work for both management and unions during her career. She has worked in executive roles as the Senior Director of Corporate Services at ATCO Gas and as the Executive Director, Human Resources Division at the Edmonton Police Service. Ms. Norrie was also a Business Agent and General Counsel for a large public sector union. Since 1997 Ms. Norrie has had her own consultancy, Norrie & Co. which has provided her the opportunity to expand her work as a consultant in the area of labour relations, mediation, investigations and training.
Mr. Klaus G. Opatril (North)
K.G. Opatril Mediation Services
Contact information and calendar
Mr. Opatril has over 30 years of labour relations experience and a Bachelor of Education from the University of Calgary and a Master of Education from the University of Oregon. His career has most recently involved employment as the Coordinator of Teacher Welfare for the Alberta Teachers’ Association. His responsibilities included the negotiation and administration of collective agreements for teachers in Alberta public, separate and charter schools. He has designed and given workshops and talks on the subject of distributive and integrative bargaining, the grievance process and other labour relations topics. Mr. Opatril served as a Board Member of the Alberta Labour Relations Board from 2002 to 2005. He is currently an independent mediator operating the company KG Opatril Mediation Services and specializes in collective bargaining mediation and grievance mediation.
Ms. Cheryl Yingst Bartel (South)
Yingst Bartel ADR Inc.
Contact information and calendar
Ms. Yingst Bartel practices as both an Arbitrator and Mediator. She holds a B.A. (1987), an L.L.B. (1990), and an L.L.M. (2018) in Labour Relations and Employment Law. She is also named to the Grievance Arbitration Roster (Alberta), the Grievance Arbitrator and Employment Adjudicator Roster (Canada Labour Code), the ALRB Umpire Registry for Essential Services and is a named Umpire to the AUPE/GoA (General Services) Essential Services Agreement (Court services). A former litigator for a national law firm, she has mediated more than 100 public and private sector disputes in a wide variety of industries since being appointed to this Roster in 2010, including three strike/lockout situations. Ms. Yingst Bartel also acts throughout Western Canada as a Senior Conciliator for the Government of Canada (Office of the Public Sector Integrity Commissioner) for whistleblowing reprisal allegations in the federal public service. She also receives appointments as Investigator for complaints of sexual assault and harassment brought by students in the post-secondary setting. Ms. Yingst Bartel served as Chair of the Labour Relations Working Group for the Bill 6 consultations, building consensus amongst a diverse group of stakeholders. She is a frequent conference speaker and workshop leader.
Mr. Michael Dyer (South)
An experienced employment and labour relations expert, Mr. Dyer’s work history spans both the private and public sectors for nearly 40 years in local, national and international organizations. He has been employed as an employment law specialist, negotiator, labour relations specialist and senior executive. His university education was from U of C, U of A and UBC (Economics).
He was a board member of the Alberta Labour Relations Board (12 years), a member and past Chair of the Calgary Chamber of Commerce Human Resources Committee (10 years), a member of the Conference Board of Canada Council of Human Resources Executives (9 years), board member and past President of the Canadian Industrial Relations Association, Southern Alberta Chapter (5 years) and the past President and board member of the Alberta Congress Board (6 years). He has served and been a board member of a number of not-for-profit organizations such as the Calgary Women’s Emergency Shelter Foundation, Calgary Women’s Emergency Shelter, Discovery House, Children’s Cottage, Children’s Legal Education Resource Centre, Westwood Community Association and the Boys and Girls Clubs of Calgary. He has also been a member of the editorial board of a workplace issues magazine, a pension committee member for an employer and he has served as a trustee on a union Supplementary Health and Welfare Trust Fund.
He takes pride in health and safety, training and development and workplace awards that were given to his organizations through his leadership. He has delivered presentations on topics such as: Recruiting and Retaining the Best, Good Employees and Nasty Bosses, State of Labour Relations in the Public Sector, Challenges in Designing Pension and Benefit Plans, Creating Human Resource Best Practices and taught a post-secondary level labour relations course.
Mr. Steve Morrison (South)
Contact information and calendar
Mr. Morrison has over 39 years of labour relations experience and a Bachelor of Arts (Hon.) and Master of Arts from the University of Guelph. His career has involved employment as a Manager of Human Resources for MacMillan Bathhurst in Toronto and as Director of Human Resources for Canada Packers in Calgary. In 1991, he became a private consultant and founded Western HR Consulting, Ltd., a labour relations firm that specializes in industrial relations, policy and procedures and a wide range of other human resource services. Mr. Morrison now runs Midpoint Consulting, a firm specializing in mediation services.
Mr. D. W. (Dale) Simpson (South)
D.W. Simpson & Associates
Dale has extensive experience in the labour relations field and has been a labour mediator since 1974. He started his own labour relations/mediation business, D.W. Simpson & Associates, in 1995 after 21 years as a mediator with Alberta Labour. Dale specializes in both the prevention and resolution of labour disputes in all sectors throughout the province, including private and public. Dale participated in the development of, and continues to be active in, Preventive Mediation Programs, including grievance mediation and joint labour management training. These programs provide labour relations services and training to employers and unions together in a mixed group.
Mr. Rick Wilson (South)
FindYes Dispute Resolution Services
31 Woodhaven Road SW
Calgary, Alberta T2W 5P9
Rick holds an MBA from Queen’s University. He spent over 30 years at Canadian Pacific in a number of labour relations and operations roles. Rick was the Assistant Vice-President of Industrial Relations at Canadian Pacific Railway from 2006 until 2013, and has a broad range of business and labour relations experience across Canada and the U.S. He has been the Chief Negotiator at numerous tables, and has extensive bargaining, mediation, grievance and arbitration experience.
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