The Human Rights Campaign (HRC) released the 2023 Municipal Equality Index, and San Diego is on the list. How did we score?
The HRC’s annual Municipal Equality Index takes a deep dive into municipal laws, policies, and services to assess 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.
Based on these criteria, San Diego earned a score of 100 out of 100. In case you missed it, that’s the same as last year’s score. Here’s a breakdown of how we got here… and how that score might change.
This category looks at whether LGBTQ+ discrimination is prohibited by law in areas of employment, housing, and public accommodation. San Diego achieved a 30 out of 30 for our laws across the state, county, and municipality.
Municipality as employer
Cities can achieve points for inclusive employment policies like trans-inclusive healthcare policies and non-discrimination in city employment. San Diego 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. San Diego scored 7 out of 12, but got bonus points for city-offered services to LGBTQ+ youths and older adults.
Looking at the relationship between law enforcement and the LGBTQ+ community, San Diego scored 22 out of 22.
Leadership on LGBTQ+ equality
This section looks at city leadership’s commitment to advocacy and inclusion. San Diego got an 8 out of 8, and got bonus points for having openly LGBTQ+ elected or appointed leaders.
Other studies like this
The HRC isn’t the only organization tracking San Diego’s inclusion of the LGBTQ+ community. Explore these studies for comparison:
- Campus Pride Index, which awarded San Diego State University a 5 out of 5 score for its inclusion of the LGBTQ+ community.
- Equality California Institute’s Safe and Supportive Schools Report Card, which gave high marks to the Oceanside and San Diego Unified school districts.
San Diego earned its perfect score with bonus points. We would achieve a higher score from the HRC by having an LGBTQ+ liaison in the city executive’s office and offering services to:
- The transgender community
- LGBTQ+ people experiencing homelessness
- People living with HIV or AIDS
If you want to get involved, here are some local organizations that support the LGBTQ+ community.