Lexington’s Municipal Equality Index score

Why Lexington, KY scored 100 out of 100 in the Human Rights Campaign’s Municipal Equality Index.


The mayor and city officials cutting the ribbon for rainbow crosswalks at the intersection of North Limestone and Short Streets in 2021. | Photo by Amy Wallot, LFUCG

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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.

a sign

Lexington has a long history of working to improve the quality of life for all of its citizens. | Photo courtesy of VisitLex

Non-discrimination laws

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.

Law enforcement

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.

Looking ahead

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.

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