Savannah Nearly Doubles Municipal Equality Index

Mayor Van Johnson
Mayor Van Johnson

The City of Savannah has nearly doubled its Human Rights Campaign Municipal Equality Index or MEI (www.hrc.org/ resources/municipal-equality index) in less than six months.

One of the big goals of Mayor Van Johnson’s LGBTQ+ taskforce, PROUD Savannah, was to increase this rating. Since the establishment of PROUD Savannah on July 15, the City of Savannah’s Municipal Equality Index has increased from 40 points to 78 points.

“I am grateful for PROUD Savannah’s hard work to get us to this point, and I’m looking forward to continuing to make Savannah the most welcoming and equitable city it can be for everyone who lives, works and visits here,” Mayor Johnson said.

The MEI examines how inclusive municipal laws, policies and services are of LGBTQ people who live and work there. Cities 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.

“For LGBTQ Americans, the HRC MEI score is especially important,” said Pastor Candace Hardnett, chair of PROUD Savannah. “It gives us an idea of how accepting a city will be to our existence. This helps us determine where we will live and visit. Cities with higher scores are inherently safer for us.”

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