The City of Champaign is proud to announce that it once again earned the highest possible score on the Human Rights Campaign’s 2023 Municipal Equality Index. This is the twelfth consecutive year that the Human Rights Campaign Foundation has recognized the City for its inclusive LGBTQ+ laws, policies, and services as a part of their annual Municipal Equality Index (MEI). The MEI examines how inclusive municipal laws, policies, and services are of LGBTQ+ people who live and work there. As it did last year, the City achieved a score of 100 on the 2023 assessment – the highest possible score. Champaign joins just two other cities in Illinois (Rockford and Chicago) to receive a perfect score.
Mayor Deborah Frank Feinen said, “I’m very proud of the City of Champaign’s commitment to making our community safe and welcoming for our LGBTQ+ community members. Thanks to the leadership of the Champaign City Council, executive management, and City staff, Champaign is proud to be a shining example of how advancing inclusive laws and policies can help ensure everyone feels welcome in our wonderfully diverse city.”
Champaign’s LGBTQ+ Liaison, Kris Koester added, “The City of Champaign has been at the forefront of protecting the rights of LGBTQIA+ individuals since 1972 by prohibiting discrimination based on sexual orientation. The city organization remains committed to listening, learning, and working with our community to continue fostering that inclusivity.”
The MEI rates cities on nondiscrimination laws, the municipality as an employer, municipal services, law enforcement, and leadership on LGBTQ+ equality. The 12th Annual Municipal Equality Index analyzed 506 American cities using 49 different criteria. This year’s MEI includes ratings for nine Illinois municipalities. The MEI report shows the average score for all cities evaluated this year was 71. The City of Champaign will continue to work diligently to ensure our LGBTQ+ community members feel safe, welcomed, and respected. Learn more about this year’s Municipal Equality Index at hrc.org/mei.