Windy City Media Group Frontpage News
Celebrating 30 Years of Gay Lesbian Bisexual and Trans News
home search facebook twitter join
Gay News Sponsor Windy City Times 2015-10-07
About WCMG Publications News Index  Entertainment Features Bars & Clubs Calendar Videos Advertisers OUT! Guide    Marriage


HRC unveils municipal equality report
by Erica Demarest, Windy City Times

facebook twitter pin it stumble upon digg google +1 reddit email

Chicago ranked highly in the new Human Rights Campaign (HRC) LGBT equality report, released Nov. 27.

The 2012 Municipal Equality Index (MEI), as it is called, rated 137 U.S. cities on a scale of 0-100, using categories such as "non-discrimination laws" or "relationship recognition." Bonus points were awarded for city-specific initiatives.

"Our nation is on an irreversible path forward in LGBT equality, and local and state-level advocacy ensures our voices are heard in public squares across the country," HRC President Chad Griffin said in a press release. "This index gives advocates and municipal lawmakers a potent tool to improve the lives of LGBT people."

Eleven cities—including Seattle, San Francisco, Boston and St. Louis—earned perfect scores of 100 points.

Chicago was not far behind with a 95. The city garnered points for its approach to law enforcement and hate crimes, municipal services and programs, and state-issued civil unions.

Chicago earned only 16 of 26 possible points regarding its LGBT employment policies. However, openly gay leadership and trans-friendly initiatives delivered a boost in bonus points.

The MEI report was issued in partnership with the Equality Federation Institute and the Gay and Lesbian Victory Institute. Of the 137 cities profiled, 50 were state capitals, 50 were America's most populous cities, and 75 (25 large, 25 mid-size, 25 small) boasted the highest proportion of same-sex couples, according to a William Institute analysis of 2010 U.S. Census data.

A quarter of the cities surveyed earned more than 80 points, while nearly half obtained 60s or higher.

"Advances at the local level are often unheralded, but they are critical to building the momentum we need for statewide and federal victories," said Rebecca Isaacs, executive director of Equality Federation Institute. "[This report] is a powerful tool to help push local governments to do better."

Springfield (the only Illinois city besides Chicago to be rated) earned a 70. Statewide non-discrimination and civil-union laws enhanced the score, but the municipality scored just 7 of 26 possible points for its treatment of LGBT employees. Failing categories included "domestic partner health benefits" and "equivalent family leave."

Additionally, Springfield lost points for not providing a mayoral LGBT liaison or office of LGBT affairs.

Chicago, on the other hand, earned a perfect score in the same category—a designation some have found questionable since Mayor Rahm Emanuel recently dismantled the Advisory Council on LGBT Issues and dismissed the LGBT liaison to the city.

Nationally, about a third of the surveyed cities scored between 40 and 60. Eight cities—including Pleasant Ridge, Mich., and Jackson, Miss.—saw scores lower than 10. Additionally, Montgomery, Ala.; Frankfort, Ky.; and Jefferson City, Mo., scored zeros.

To see the full report, including scorecards and a searchable database, visit

facebook twitter pin it stumble upon digg google +1 reddit email

Windy City Media Group does not approve or necessarily agree with the views posted below.
Please do not post letters to the editor here. Please also be civil in your dialogue.
If you need to be mean, just know that the longer you stay on this page, the more you help us.


Lambda Legal expands LGBT youth advocacy 2015-10-07
Detroit mourns loss of community member 2015-10-06
Lambda expands work for LGBT youth: Ingelhart joins Midwest Regional Office 2015-10-04
Chicago domestic violence service providers call for Springfield to stop cuts 2015-09-30
Lambda to 7th Circuit: Law prohibits discrimination against lesbian instructor 2015-09-30
ACLU of Illinois' legal director stepping down 2015-09-30
National: Clergy and Black Lives Matter; lawsuit; Grindr felony 2015-09-29
Bully Project uses film, education, litigation to assist schools 2015-09-23
Gov't: Ireland will recognize marriage 2015-09-23
Law protecting the vulnerable may conflict with laws in IL municipalities 2015-09-21
Commission finds in favor of downstate couple 2015-09-19
Nepal ratifies new constitution that includes LGBT protections 2015-09-18
Long time ACLU leader Harvey Grossman moves to Senior Counsel role 2015-09-18
Illinois rights commission says B&B violated law in treatment of gay couple 2015-09-17
Court: Fired transgender woman can sue rormer employer for sex discrimination 2015-09-16
Relationships & the Law Today: Importance of estate planning 2015-09-16
HHS proposed rule would cover anti-trans discrimination 2015-09-16
THEATER REVIEW Katrina: Mother-in- Law of 'em All 2015-09-16
National: Pro-LGBT ordinances; Cleveland assault; Hip Chick honor 2015-09-15
Lambda to Wisconsin court: Act fast in case for accurate birth certificates 2015-09-13
Judge dismisses Ohio woman's fertility clinic lawsuit 2015-09-04
Kentucky clerk jailed; couple get license 2015-09-04
Kentucky clerk refusing licenses ordered jailed 2015-09-03
Saturday Boystown action for decriminalization of sex work in Rentboy raid aftermath 2015-09-03
RFRA laws subject of latest MAP report 2015-09-02
National: Ashley Madison and Grindr; RentBoy; Facebook apology 2015-09-01
Report looks at implications of religious exemption laws 2015-09-01
Project Fierce Chicago buys building in North Lawndale 2015-08-28
Chicago panel calls for awareness, action for murdered Black trans women 2015-08-27
Virginia shooter gay, manifesto says 2015-08-26
Homeland Security raids offices in New York 2015-08-26
National: Hillary; Texas hate crime; Trump; 18th trans murder 2015-08-25
World: Murder suspect charged; fashion figure fired; Montreal parade 2015-08-25
LGBT groups join Amnesty International in call to decriminalize sex work 2015-08-25
UN brief to include ISIS terror against LGBTIs 2015-08-21
Rauner signs anti-conversion therapy bill 2015-08-20
Social Security will retroactively grant spousal benefits in Lambda case 2015-08-20
City of Chicago immigrant reform plan unveiled 2015-08-20
Queer woman talks activism, being undocumented 2015-08-19
IGLHRC launches Ugandan campaign 2015-08-19

Copyright © 2015 Windy City Media Group. All rights reserved.
Reprint by permission only. PDFs for back issues are downloadable from
our online archives. Single copies of back issues in print form are
available for $4 per issue, older than one month for $6 if available,
by check to the mailing address listed below.

Return postage must accompany all manuscripts, drawings, and
photographs submitted if they are to be returned, and no
responsibility may be assumed for unsolicited materials.
All rights to letters, art and photos sent to Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago
Gay and Lesbian News and Feature Publication) will be treated
as unconditionally assigned for publication purposes and as such,
subject to editing and comment. The opinions expressed by the
columnists, cartoonists, letter writers, and commentators are
their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay,
Lesbian, Bisexual and Transegender News and Feature Publication).

The appearance of a name, image or photo of a person or group in
Nightspots (Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times
(a Chicago Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender News and Feature
Publication) does not indicate the sexual orientation of such
individuals or groups. While we encourage readers to support the
advertisers who make this newspaper possible, Nightspots (Chicago
GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay, Lesbian
News and Feature Publication) cannot accept responsibility for
any advertising claims or promotions.








About WCMG Publications News Index  Entertainment Features Bars & Clubs Calendar Videos Advertisers OUT! Guide    Marriage

About WCMG      Contact Us      Online Front  Page      Windy City  Times      Nightspots      OUT! Guide     
Identity      BLACKlines      En La Vida      Archives      Subscriptions      Distribution      Windy City Queercast     
Queercast Archives      Advertising  Rates      Deadlines      Advanced Search     
Press  Releases      Event Photos      Join WCMG  Email List      Email Blast     
Upcoming Events      Todays Events      Ongoing Events      Post an Event      Bar Guide      Community Groups      In Memoriam      Outguide Categories      Outguide Advertisers      Search Outguide      Travel      Dining Out      Blogs      Spotlight  Video     
Classifieds      Real Estate      Place a  Classified     

Windy City Media Group produces Windy City Queercast, & publishes Windy City Times,
The Weekly Voice of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Trans Community,
Nightspots, Out! Resource Guide, and Identity.
5315 N. Clark St. #192, Chicago, IL 60640-2113 • PH (773) 871-7610 • FAX (773) 871-7609.