By Kevin Haas
Rock River Current
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ROCKFORD — A civil rights organization that creates a benchmark for how well governments embody LGBTQ+ inclusion has given the city of Rockford a perfect score on the annual index.
The Human Rights Campaign’s annual Municipal Equality Index examines non-discrimination laws, how the municipality behaves as an employer, municipal services, law enforcement and LGBTQ+ leadership in creating the score. Rockford scored 100/100.
The city has participated in the scorecard since 2018 and has improved by 41 points. Last year, it scored an 89.
“The MEI Scorecard is an important benchmark and provides cities with accountability and a way to measure their progress,” Mayor Tom McNamara said in a news release. “The scorecard also illustrates that these measures are the right thing to do for our residents and our community.”
The city has adopted a non-discrimination ordinance for contractors, added transgender-inclusive health care benefits, established a Community Relations Commission to address issues of equality, equity and discrimination, proclaimed June as LGBTQ Pride Month, created LGBTQIA+ liaisons for both the city and the Rockford Police Department, and more widely distributed information on city job openings.
The Human Rights Campaign represents more than 3 million members and is the largest national lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer civil rights organization in the United States.
You can see the city’s scorecard here.