Topics Addressed by
Angel Alderete


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  .When did you begin at CRS? When did you leave?
 
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        A. What did you do before coming to CRS?
                   
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        B. What civil rights or conflict management work did you do before your CRS work?
                   
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        C. Why did you decide to work at CRS?
                   
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        D. What did you do at CRS (what was your role)?
                   
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  .Background information on a case
 
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  .When the case first came to your attention, what did you do?
 
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        A. When making an initial assessment of a case, with whom did you talk first? Next?
                   
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        B. Did everyone want you involved? If not, what did you do about that?
                   
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        C. Did you give advance notice of your arrival? To whom? Was there anyone who you did not inform? Why?
                   
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        D. How did you prepare for your intervention?
                   
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  .How did you do your onsite assessment?
 
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        A. How did you identify the proper people to talk to or get involved?
                   
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        B. How did you identify leaders?
                   
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  .How did you design a response plan?
 
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        A. Did you set goals for your intervention? At what point in the process?
                   
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        B. Did the parties assist in the goal-setting process or influence your choice of goals? How?
                   
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        C. How did you determine your own role (e.g., to act as an advisor, conciliator or a mediator)?
                   
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        D. Was your gender a factor in your ability to build trust with the disputants?
                   
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        E. How did you prove your credibility?
                   
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        F. How important was it for you to gain the trust of the parties?
                   
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        G. How did you build trust with the disputants?
                   
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        H. Were you able to work effectively when trust levels were low between you and one of the parties? How?
                   
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        I. Was your race or ethnicity a factor in your ability to build trust with the disputants?
                   
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  .How did you identify underlying issues?
 
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        A. Were the issues that appeared to be most critical to you always the ones that brought you into the case?
                   
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        B. Did the conflict become defined differently over time? How?
                   
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        C. Did you find it necessary at times to help the parties define or prioritize their issues? How did you do this?
                   
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        D. Did you have effective techniques for persuading a party to reframe the problem to make it negotiable?
                   
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  .Tell me about your meetings with the parties when you were helping them to resolve their differences.
 
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        A. How did you decide who would be at the negotiation table?
                   
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        B. Did representation questions ever become a problem? How did you decide who would be allowed to speak for a group?
                   
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        C. How did you decide when to meet separately with the parties and when to bring them together?
                   
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        D. Did the parties ever refuse to meet together? How did you handle it?
                   
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        E. Was timing of the discussions critical? Did you ever need to wait or hurry up in order to get people to come together?
                   
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        F. When you brought the parties together, how did you decide where to convene the meeting?
                   
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        G. How did you assist in opening communications between the parties, to get them talking and listening to one another?
                   
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        H. Were there situations when a party came to the table but gave only lip service, or refused to negotiate in good faith?
                   
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        I. Would the parties look to you for guidance in constructing solutions or would they come up with their own solutions?
                   
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        J. How would you respond when you were called upon to carry messages between the parties?
                   
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  .What did you do to diminish tension between the parties?
 
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        A. Did the situation ever become violent or potentially violent? What did you do to diminish that?
                   
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        B. Did a party ever threaten to walk out of a mediation? What did you do then?
                   
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        C. Did a conflict ever escalate after CRS became involved? How?
                   
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        D. How did you initiate de-escalation?
                   
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  .Did you find yourself helping the parties strengthen their own capacity to deal with conflict?
 
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        A. Did you provide technical assistance to the parties? Can you give some examples?
                   
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        B. Did you provide training for the parties? What types of training? Who did it?
                   
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        C. Were their other types of technical assistance, e.g. consultants, referrals to other communities, written materials?
                   
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        D. Did you help the parties prepare for mediation or any joint meetings?
                   
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  .What did you do when you hit a brick wall in your effort to bridge differences between the parties?
 
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        A. When you perceived a significant power imbalance did you try to level the playing field? How did you do this?
                   
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        B. Did you ever provide assistance to one party without the knowledge of the other?
                   
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        C. Did you ever try to use the power of the Justice Department to influence the situation or level the playing field?
                   
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  .How would you describe your work in terms of your neutrality, impartiality, and objectivity in a case?
 
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        A. Did you have a problem retaining your impartiality while trying to level the playing field prior to negotiations?
                   
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        B. Did you ever have your impartiality challenged? If so, how did you respond?
                   
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        C. Did you ever intentionally act as an advocate for one side? Did you ever do this unintentionally?
                   
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        D. What role does listening play in your work?
                   
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        E. How much direction did you give the parties in mediation?
                   
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        F. Did you ever try to pressure the parties to change their approach?
                   
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        G. Can you explain the difference between conciliation and mediation?
                   
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  .What cultural or racial factors influenced the process?
 
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  .Were you able to detect when an internal conflict existed within a party that was inhibiting progress?
 
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        A. What types of resources from within the community would you use? How did you get them involved?
                   
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        B. Did you ever draw upon resources or refer parties to resources from outside the community?
                   
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        C. Can you recall any times when assuring confidentiality created a problem for you?
                   
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  .How did you deal with the media? Were they an asset or a liability to your work?
 
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        A. When the needs of newspaper, radio, or television reporters interfered with your work, how did you deal with the problem?
                   
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        B. Did you ever try to use the media as an ally to mediation?
                   
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        C. Did the parties ever agree to a policy regarding statements to the press as a condition of negotiation or mediation?
                   
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  .How did you determine when to end your involvement in a conflict?
 
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        A. Before terminating a case, did you help the parties develop a contingency plan to help prevent a recurrence of the conflict?
                   
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        B. What might a contingency plan include?
                   
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        C. Did you assist the parties design other structures to prevent a recurrence of the conflict?
                   
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        D. Did you take continuing responsibility for its implementation?
                   
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        E. Did you plan any follow up after the case was closed?
                   
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        F. Did you have any continuing professional relationships between CRS and community people after a case was "closed?"
                   
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        G. What would you say were the positive outcomes of the contingency planning process?
                   
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  .What were your measures of the success of your intervention?
 
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  .How did the changing nature of the civil rights movement and protest activity affect your work?
 
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  .Have there been changes in CRS over the years?
 
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  .What do you think are the most important skills and attributes of an effective civil rights mediator?
 
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        A. What do you think has been your greatest strength as a civil rights mediator?
                   
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  .Interesting anecdotes.
 
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  .Agency-related information
 
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  .LA riot history
 
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  .Did CRS ever co-mediate with mediators who were not with the agency?
 
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