At our September 2023 Garden Life Meeting we will be asking CHS Members to vote on the following item as an amendment to our constitution.

Dispute Resolution Procedure

The purpose of this procedure is to guide two or more parties toward a mutually acceptable outcome in the event that they are unable to agree upon an issue arising during CHS activities and events. If either party is not legally competent to participate in this process, they shall be represented by their legal guardian.

Information that could reasonably lead to the identification of the other party in conjunction with the details of an issue must not be shared outside the issue resolution process.

Anyone having an issue with, or grievance against, another member of the CHS that is not a mundane legal matter or dealt with in the CHS Rules, shall first attempt to settle the matter as follows:

First Stage

The person shall attempt to hold a private discussion with the other to come to a resolution. If either party wishes, they may designate another person they trust who is willing to conduct or participate in the discussion on their behalf. If desired by either party and subsequently accepted by both parties, an impartial mediator may be present. The time, communication method and location of any discussion should be mutually agreed on.

Second Stage

If the issue cannot be resolved at the First Stage, the person shall bring the matter, preferably in writing, to the attention of the CHS President. The President, or their trusted delegate, must then attempt to arbitrate a resolution. If the President, or their trusted delegate, (e.g. their life partner) is involved in the issue, this stage step may be omitted.

Third Stage

If the issue cannot be resolved by bringing it to the attention of the CHS President (or their trusted delegate) then professional dispute resolution processes may be sought to facilitate actions such negotiation, mediation or arbitration.

Arbitration is a formal dispute resolution process where two or more parties agree to submit all or certain disputes between them to an independent person called an arbitrator. Arbitration is entered into by agreement and the process is governed by the Arbitration Act 1996 and the Arbitration Amendment Act 2007. An arbitrator’s decision, called an award, is binding on the parties and is enforceable as a judgment of the Court.