Mediation is widely used in the area of family law, where custody mediation is often mandated by statute or ordered by the court. According to statistics collected by the National Intimate Partner and Sexual Violence Survey (NISVS), approximately 1 in 4 women and 1 in 10 men experience contact sexual violence, physical violence, and/or stalking by an intimate partner and report an intimate partner violence-related impact during their lifetime. Intimate partner violence is also reported in more than half of all divorce cases. Based on these numbers, custody mediators are likely to encounter domestic violence in at least half of their cases.
For this reason, the NCJFCJ’s Resource Center on Domestic Violence: Child Protection and Custody (RCDV:CPC) has prepared this guide as a reference tool for mediators seeking to improve their practice on custody cases involving domestic violence. This publication is not intended as a substitute for thorough and ongoing training on domestic violence, but rather seeks to provide mediators with helpful links to existing literature and resources on this important topic.