Over 100 American Cities Receive Perfect Score On HRC’s Municipal Equality Index

iStock

“Despite the increasing attacks we are seeing on transgender youth in state legislatures, the important work to advance protections for LGBTQ+ people continues at the local level,” says Fran Hutchins, the Executive Director of the Equality Federation Institute,

Over 100 American cities have received a perfect score on the Human Rights Campaign (HRC) Foundation’s Municipal Equality Index (MEI).

The MEI, which was first launched in 2012 by the HRC Foundation — the educational arm of the HRC — and the Equality Federation, measures municipal laws, policies, and services available to LGBTQ+ individuals. This year, a record-breaking 110 cities across the country earned the top score of 100, which is up from 11 in 2012. 

Among the findings, 181 cities have transgender-inclusive healthcare coverage for municipal employees while 43 had anti-conversion therapy ordinances in place. The report also notes that progress was nationwide, with each region of the U.S. scoring higher than in previous years, even while a record-number of states have proposed or passed anti-trans legislation. 

“Despite the increasing attacks we are seeing on transgender youth in state legislatures, the important work to advance protections for LGBTQ+ people continues at the local level,” says Fran Hutchins, the Executive Director of the Equality Federation Institute, in a statement released by the HRC. “As we face upcoming attacks by opponents of quality, we know the state-based movement is stronger than ever and ready to fight for millions of LGBTQ+ Americans who need us in the towns and cities across this country.” 

Cities earning top marks were more likely to have comprehensive non-discrimination policies, services targeted specifically for transgender individuals and LGBTQ+ youth, reported hate crime statistics, and at least one elected or appointed LGBTQ+ official. They were also more likely to offer to healthcare for transgender individuals, and access to benefits for same-sex partners.

Top-ranking cities can be found across the country, and include Birmingham, AL; Los Angeles, CA; Denver, CO; Chicago, IL; Louisville, KY; Boston, MA; Ann Arbor, MI; Minneapolis, MN; St. Louis, MO; New York City, NY; Cleveland, OH; Austin, TX; and Richmond, VA. 


What Do You Think?