Gov. Nathan Deal (John Disney / ALM)

Gov. Nathan Deal—lawyer, former juvenile court judge, father of a superior court judge and leader of a nationally known criminal justice reform effort—is encouraging litigants to settle their differences outside the courthouse.

The Judicial Council of Georgia announced Friday that Deal signed a proclamation recognizing Oct. 15-21, 2017, as “Dispute Resolution Week” in Georgia.

The council explained in a news release that Dispute Resolution Week supports the education of judges, members of the bar, and the public in finding “durable solutions to resolve disputes outside of a courtroom by utilizing mediation, arbitration, and other restorative processes.”

The week is intended to empower individuals, families, communities, organizations and businesses to find common ground through collaborative problem solving, the council said. The Georgia Commission on Dispute Resolution, State Bar of Georgia Dispute Resolution Section, and Georgia Office of Dispute Resolution will be working together to promote these values and advocate for champions in the field of dispute resolution, the release said.