CPR Statement on Trump's Attack on Adjudicators

Statement from Noah Hanft, President & CEO

The International Institute for Conflict Prevention and Resolution (CPR), an organization that for 36 years has been committed to furthering fair and effective alternative dispute resolution (ADR) practices worldwide, today spoke out against Donald Trump’s attacks on adjudicators. CPR took this position in response to recent statements made by Donald Trump questioning the impartiality of Judge Gonzalo P. Curiel because of his Mexican heritage, and also questioning whether a Muslim judge could fairly preside over a case involving him.

“Those who sit as judges and adjudicate cases have a well-established responsibility to be fair and impartial,” said CPR President & CEO Noah Hanft. “This obligation is one that all adjudicators, including neutrals on CPR’s own panel of distinguished neutrals that includes many former Judges, take with extreme seriousness. Indeed, it is critical to maintaining both the integrity and stability of the dispute resolution process. Therefore, accusations that judges are biased, based solely upon factors such as their ‘heritage,’ are both dangerous and irresponsible and anathema to basic precepts of justice.”

Hanft concluded, “As an organization committed to improving the way disputes are resolved and driving diversity within the profession, we consider the implication that one’s family background renders him or her biased and unable to adjudicate a matter fairly and without conflict to be a great affront. We call upon other ADR providers, and the legal and business community that relies upon a fair and stable judicial framework, to similarly condemn these statements.”