The Human Rights Campaign released the 2023 Municipal Equality Index, and Madison is on 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.
This category looks at whether LGBTQ+ discrimination is prohibited by law in areas of employment, housing, and public accommodation. Madison achieved a 30 out of 30 for our laws across the state, county, and municipality, and received bonus points for municipal single-occupancy all-gender facilities + 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. Madison 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. Madison scored 12 out of 12, and got bonus points for city-offered services to LGBTQ+ youths, older adults, and those living with HIV or AIDS.
Looking at the relationship between law enforcement and the LGBTQ+ community, Madison earned 22 out of 22.
Leadership on LGBTQ+ equality
This section looks at city leadership’s commitment to advocacy and inclusion. Madison got an 8 out of 8, and earned bonus points for having openly LGBTQ+ elected or appointed leaders.
Madison would achieve an even higher score from the HRC if the city provided services to the transgender community and LGBTQ+ people experiencing homelessness.
If you want to get involved, here are some local organizations that support the LGBTQ+ community.