The Human Rights Campaign released the 2023 Municipal Equality Index, and Lexington is at the top of the list. How did we score?
Each year, the Human Rights Campaign releases a Municipal Equality Index which takes a deep dive into municipal laws, policies, and services and how inclusive they are of LGBTQ+ people.
This year’s edition examined 506 cities on 49 different criteria across five categories — non-discrimination laws, municipality as employer, services and programs, law enforcement, and leadership on LGBTQ+ equality.
Based on these criteria, Lexington earned a score of 100 out of 100. A perfect score. Here’s a breakdown of how we got here… and how that score can change.
This category looks at whether LGBTQ+ discrimination is prohibited by law in areas of employment, housing, and public accommodation. Lexington achieved a 28 out of 30 for our laws across the state, county, and municipality, but received bonus points for single-occupancy all-gender facilities and protections against youth conversion therapy.
Municipality as employer
Cities can achieve points for inclusive employment policies like trans-inclusive healthcare policies and non-discrimination in city employment. Lexington got a 28 out of 28, and earned bonus points for city employee domestic partner benefits.
Services and programs
This section considers the city’s efforts to include LGBTQ+ folks in city services and programs. Lexington scored 12 out of 12, and got bonus points for services to LGBTQ+ people experiencing homelessness, older adults, and more.
Looking at the relationship between law enforcement and the LGBTQ+ community, Lexington earned 22 out of 22.
Leadership in LGBTQ+ equality
This section looks at city leadership’s commitment to advocacy and inclusion. Lexington got an 8 out of 8, and earned bonus points for having openly LGBTQ+ elected or appointed leaders.
Even a perfect score doesn’t mean a perfect city. Lexington earned its perfect score with two bonus points but our municipality could achieve a higher score from the HRC by offering services such as youth bullying prevention policy.
If you want to get involved, here are some local organizations that support the LGBTQ+ community.