State College Scores 98 out of 100 on the 2018 Municipal Equality Index
State College, PA – The Human Rights Campaign (HRC) Foundation recently released their 2018 Municipal Equality Index (MEI): A Nationwide Evaluation of Municipal Law report. In this report the Borough of State College scored 98 out of 100 total points. Previously, State College scored 77 out of 100. According to the HRC’s website, “the MEI examines how inclusive municipal laws, policies and services are of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Queer (LGBTQ) people who live and work there. Municipalities are rated based on non-discrimination laws, the municipality as an employer, municipal services, law enforcement and the city leadership's public position on equality.” Download the State College 2018 MEI scorecard here.
This initiative was led by Kevin Kassab, Community Engagement Manager and LGBTQ Liaison, Autumn Busbee, Community Engagement Specialist and Fanny Frias, Community Engagement Intern, with support provided by the Borough’s Advisory Committee on Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Queer Matters. The Borough is fortunate to have volunteers and interns to assist with these important projects. For more information about volunteering and interning for the Borough please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Borough was able to increase its score through the recent actions by Council in establishing gender neutral bathrooms in the Municipal Building, creating an advisory committee on LGBTQ matters, and passing Ordinance 2108 which prohibits conversion therapy to minors in State College. This is just a small list of everything the Borough has done to receive its MEI score.
State College Mayor, Donald M. Hahn states, “State College is not only proud of the inclusivity of our community, but we are also grateful for the diversity of those who contribute to it. This score helps affirm that equity, inclusion and justice are pillars of the State College community.”
“As President of Council, I’ve had the great opportunity to work to pass Resolutions and Ordinances that confirm that the Borough of State College is a welcoming and diverse community. This score shows that our work has helped to make the community more equitable, however, even more progress is needed. I and the rest of Council will continue our work on behalf of the community. I want to thank all the staff and members of our LGBTQ Advisory Committee that have worked on this project,” states State College Borough Council President, Evan Myers.
What is the Human Rights Campaign Foundation?
The HRC Foundation represents a force of more than 3 million members and supporters nationwide. As the largest national lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer civil rights organization, HRC envisions a world where LGBTQ people are ensured of their basic equal rights, and can be open, honest and safe at home, at work and in the community.
What is the Municipal Equality Index?
The Municipal Equality Index rates municipalities of varying sizes drawn from every state in the nation. The 2018 MEI is the seventh annual edition and rates a total of 506 cities on 49 different criteria covering citywide nondiscrimination protections, policies for municipal employees, city services, law enforcement, and city leadership’s relationship with the LGBTQ community. Find out more information about the MEI at https://www.hrc.org/mei.