NVC News

Civil Conversations in Uncivil Debates

Originally Published in Good Times

In recent years, plans for a controversial seawater desalination plant in Santa Cruz landed retired electrician and environmental activist Rick Longinotti and former mayor and councilman Mike Rotkin on opposite sides of the aisle. Both became leading voices for their respective sides—Longinotti as the founder of opposition group Desal Alternatives, and Rotkin as a once-desal opponent-turned-supporter from years of looking at the issue. The men didn’t know each other well before the desal episode—in Rotkin’s words, their “first real connection was on different sides of this important local issue.” Yet, despite their roles in one of Santa Cruz’s most divisive and heated episodes, they say they not only managed to communicate well, but also grew to enjoy it. Read MORE

Make up without breaking up soft solutions

Originally Published in The Hindu

Publishing Date: September 20, 2013

Have you walked out of a relationship with a heavy heart wishing you had said a little less and listened a lot more? Or displayed road rage that did nothing for your self esteem and even less for your reputation? Unfortunately, it’s often too late that we realize that we could have dealt with a problematic situation or person more tactfully. Non-Violent Communication (NVC) is just that – a way around difficult situations without either party falling to pieces with tools to reach soft solutions. NVC evolved through Dr Marshall B Rosenberg’s quest for peacemaking skills and is all about the ability to be aware and open to settle differences harmoniously. Read MORE

My View: A magic recipe for Building the Peace

Originally Published in RR Star

Publishing Date: September 13, 2013

“I believe that we must and we can Build the Peace every day.” This is the way that the Rock River Valley Peace Pledge begins. In a community fractured by violence, unemployment and isolation, these words resonate in a way not many other words do.   Building the Peace is certainly not a straight nor single path. In order to heal the wounds of our community, we must listen carefully and take note of the path we each will take to accomplish this goal. Perhaps what we do is not as important as just doing something. We need to build courage to reach a bit outside the comfort zone of what we always do and try something new. Read MORE