Long Beach Earns Perfect Score in Human Rights Campaign Municipal Equality Index

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For four years in a row, the City of Long Beach has been named one of the best cities in the nation for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) inclusion in municipal law and policy. Long Beach was one of only 47 cities nationwide to achieve a perfect score in the Human Rights Campaign’s Municipal Equality Index (MEI).

“Long Beach has a strong and proud history of diversity and inclusiveness,” said Mayor Robert Garcia. “This recognition illustrates our commitment to respecting the rights of all people in Long Beach.”

Long Beach has long recognized LGBT rights in its municipal laws and policies. Examples highlighted in the report include the Contractor Non-Discrimination Ordinance; Trans-Inclusive Health Benefits; the Human Relations Commission; the Police Department’s LGBT Liaison; City leadership’s public positions regarding LGBT equality; the City Council’s pro-equality legislative and policy efforts; and the City’s LGBT leadership.

The City of Long Beach received a score of 100, plus seven bonus points this year. Cities are rated on a scale of 0-100, with bonus points awarded for items which apply to some, but not all cities.

The MEI examines the laws, policies, and services of municipalities and rates them on the basis of their inclusivity of LGBT people who live and work there. The 2015 MEI rated a total of 408 cities from every state in the nation, with a total population of 89,260,006 people. The 2014 MEI rated 353 cities, with a total population of 84,442,640.

According to the 2015 MEI:

  • Only 11 percent of the cities scored 100 points.
  • Nationally, the average city score was 56 points; in California the average score was 73.
  • Seven other cities in California received perfect scores.
  • 32 million people live in cities with fully-inclusive local protections that are not guaranteed by the states in which they live.

The HRC researched hundreds of cities for the 2015 MEI, including all 50 state capitals, the nation’s 200 most populous cities, the five largest cities in every state, the cities home to the two largest public universities in each state, and an equal mix of 75 of the nation’s large, mid-size and small municipalities with the highest proportion of same-sex couples.

The Human Rights Campaign is the largest civil rights organization working to achieve equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender Americans. The report is available at www.hrc.org/mei.

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