The Human Rights Campaign has once again recognized the City of Long Beach as one of the best cities for the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) community nationwide, chiefly through its inclusive municipal laws and policies, the city announced today.
Long Beach, along with 59 other cities, earned a perfect score of 100 on the Human Rights Campaign’s Municipal Equality Index (MEI). The city received an additional eight bonus points for a welcoming place to work, enforcement mechanism, services to LGBTQ youth, services for people living with HIV/AIDS and openly electing or appointing LGBTQ municipal leaders.
“We are extremely proud of this important recognition,” said Mayor Robert Garcia in a statement. “Our longstanding commitment to diversity, inclusiveness and respect for all people is a testament to our character as a world-class city.”
This is the fifth year Long Beach has been recognized by the Human Rights Campaign for upholding LGBT rights in its municipal laws and policies. The report highlighted examples such as the Contractor Non-Discrimination Ordinance, Trans-Inclusive Health Benefits, Human Relations Commission, 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, according to the release.
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. According to the release, the 2016 MEI rated a total of 506 cities from every state with a total population of 94,237,171 people. The 2015 MEI rated 408 cities, with a total population of 89,260,006.
In this year’s MEI, 12 percent of the cities received 100 points, while the national city average was 73 points. Nine of California’s cities scored a perfect 100. According to the release, 24 million people live in cities where fully-inclusive local protections are not guaranteed by the states they live in.
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 here.