Wednesday, October 17, 2018
For more information, please contact:
Barbara McKinney, Director, City of Bloomington Human Rights Commission,, 812-349-3429

City of Bloomington Earns Perfect Score on Human Rights Campaign Index

Bloomington, Ind. – Bloomington has been awarded a perfect score by the Human Rights Campaign (HRC) on the 2018 Municipal Equality Index (MEI).  The index evaluates how well a city supports the LGBTQ+ people who live and work there through its laws, policies, and services.  Bloomington was one of only 78 cities in the U.S. to earn a perfect score this year, and the only city in Indiana to do so.

The 2018 MEI rating marks the fourth consecutive year that Bloomington has been recognized with a perfect score.   At the same time, Bloomington has garnered the distinction of being named an “All Star” city for the fourth year in a row.  “All Star” cities are those that achieve an MEI score above 85 percent, despite their location in a state that lacks comprehensive non-discrimination laws.  Indianapolis, which scored 89 on the MEI, was also named an “All Star.”

“Bloomington’s inclusiveness is one of the reasons so many of us cherish our city,” said Mayor John Hamilton.  “For two hundred years, Bloomington has been a welcoming place, and we work daily at the policy level to ensure that equity is built into our practices and codes.  This rating is commensurate with the City’s commitment to and the community’s support for civil rights for everyone, including our LGBTQ+ residents and visitors.”

The MEI score is determined by the city’s record in five categories: non-discrimination laws, municipal employment policies and services, city services and programs, law enforcement, and leadership on LGBTQ+ equality.  Bloomington’s scorecard  highlights a variety of City initiatives that include, support, engage, and protect LGBTQ+ individuals, including the following:

  • Human Rights Commission enforces non-discrimination ordinance

  • City provides employee domestic partner benefits

  • Police department employs LGBTQ liaison

  • Police department reports 2016 hate crimes statistics to the FBI

  • City maintains single-occupancy all-gender facilities

  • City provides services to the HIV/AIDS population

“Bloomington has long been known as a gay-friendly city, but we know we can always do more,” said Human Rights Commission Director and Assistant City Attorney Barbara McKinney. “The MEI helps the City in our ongoing commitment to meet changing needs, to make sure we continue to be a place that welcomes and values every person.”

Established in 1980, the Washington, D.C.-based Human Rights Campaign is the largest advocacy group working to achieve civil rights for  LGBTQ individuals in the United States. The HRC began evaluating cities using the MEI in 2012.