Photo by Eduardo Pastor Mesa City Council voted to pass an ordinance that prohibits discrimination in public accommodation, housing, and employment, based on “race, color, ethnicity, national origin, age, disability, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender, gender identity, veteran's status, marital status, and familial status.”
Photo by Eduardo Pastor

“While we still have work to do, this announcement is cause to celebrate a win—not just for Phoenix, but for equality.”

The City of Phoenix just got a metaphorical A+ on the inclusion of the LGBTQ community.

For the eighth year in a row, The Human Rights Campaign (HRC) gave Phoenix a perfect score of 100 for the city’s “ongoing efforts to ensure equal treatment of members of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ) community.”

The HRC looked at something called the Municipal Equality Index (MEI) scores to determine how inclusive policies, laws, and other services are to LGBTQ residents in each city. Over 500 cities across the U.S. were evaluated by the MEI.

HRC works to ensure that the LGBTQ community, and particularly those who are trans, people of color, and HIV+, are treated as equal citizens around the world.

Phoenix Mayor Kate Gallego said in a press release, “Earning a perfect score of 100 for the eighth year in a row highlights the fulfillment of our promise to be a city that works for everyone. While we still have work to do, this announcement is cause to celebrate a win—not just for Phoenix, but for equality.”

Phoenix City Councilmember Debra Stark credited partnerships, LGBTQ liaisons for city departments, and a non-discrimination ordinance among the score’s factors. “A perfect score for the city would not be possible without the consistent, hard work of many.”

HRC has given Phoenix a perfect score since 2012, when the city expanded its anti-discrimination ordinance, making it unlawful to discriminate against people based on sexual orientation, gender identity, or disability.

“Year after year, this perfect score is an example of Phoenicians embracing and celebrating our city’s diversity,” Councilmember Laura Pastor added. “Phoenix’s broad diversity is what makes our city a wonderful place to live and work for everyone.”

Councilmember Carlos Garcia said he was grateful for the work of the Human Rights Campaign and for their work on the LGBTQ Municipal Equality Index to hold cities accountable.