INDEPENDENT CHOICES: A National Symposium on Consumer-Direction and Self-Determination for the Elderly and Persons with Disabilities. From the Editor

The topic of this Impact returns to the topic of the first issue published 12 years ago. Although that one focused on what was then called "case management", we noted that terms like "service coordination" and "service integration" were becoming increasingly popular as descriptors of "the complex processes involved in case management."

Today, numerous labels are applied to the direct assistance provided people with developmental disabilities and their families, assistance intended to support them in understanding their full range of service and support options; making decisions that support their values, goals, and needs; and more directly controlling their own lives. In these pages, the authors use a variety of terms (e.g., case manager, service coordinator, support broker) to describe the role of those who are supporting persons with developmental disabilities to live the lives they choose. This variation in language reflects our evolving understanding of support, as well as our diverse service systems. Whatever the label, the important message for readers of this issue is that those who fill that role are a vital element of systems committed to supporting inclusion and self-determination.