The Human Rights Campaign (HRC) released its 2019 Municipal Equality Index (MEI). The 2019 MEI is the eighth edition of the only nationwide assessment of LGBTQ+ inclusion in municipal law, policy, and services. In just one year, the City of Racine improved its MEI score by 45 points – going from a score of 41 in 2018 to a score of 86 in 2019 – making it one of the top highest city score increases nationwide.
“I am extremely delighted with the efforts we have made this year to improve our MEI score. City staff, under the leadership of Vicky Selkowe from my office, made dramatic progress in making sure the City is more inclusive to the LGBTQ+ community,” said Mayor Cory Mason. “We want Racine to be a community that is inclusive and equitable for everyone, no matter your race, ethnic background, religion, or sexual orientation and identity. While there is still work to be done, I am proud of the progress we made this year.”
Racine demonstrated its leadership on equality by expanding its non-discrimination ordinance, enacting protections against the harmful practice of so-called “conversion therapy,” and appointing LGBTQ liaisons in city government.
“I am very proud of the work Racine put in to achieve such a significant jump on the MEI score. Racine Mayor Cory Mason has even shared that he knows his city is more inclusive than what the MEI score originally indicated. Since he was elected, he, his team, the LGBT Center of SE Wisconsin and strong allies in the community worked hard to make the MEI score match the inclusivity of the city. I am confident they will soon reach a 100 MEI score,” said Wendy Strout, the Human Rights Campaign Wisconsin State Director.
In recognition of this achievement, on Thursday, November 21st, Racine Mayor Cory Mason will accept an HRC award on behalf of the City of Racine and make remarks on the city’s pro-equality efforts at a special reception hosted by the Human Rights Campaign and Fair Wisconsin. The event will be held at 11 a.m. on the 21st at the LGBT Center of SE Wisconsin at 1456 Junction Ave in Racine. The public is welcome to attend this celebration.
The City of Racine scorecard, along with all other participating cities, can be found here: https://www.hrc.org/mei