Dive into San Jose’s 2023 Municipal Equality Index score

Why San Jose scored 100 out of 100 in the Human Rights Campaign’s Municipal Equality Index.

Two people pose and create a heart with their hands at the 2018 Silicon Valley Pride Festival.

Be prideful, San Jose.

Photo via Wikimedia Commons

Table of Contents

The Human Rights Campaign released the 2023 Municipal Equality Index, and San Jose is on the list. How did we score?

Each year, the Human Rights Campaign releases a Municipal Equality Index which takes a deep dive into municipal laws, policies, and services and how inclusive they are of LGBTQ+ people. This year’s edition examined 506 cities on 49 different criteria across five categories — non-discrimination laws, municipality as employer, services and programs, law enforcement, and leadership on LGBTQ+ equality.

Based on these criteria, San Jose earned a score of 100 out of 100. That’s three points higher than last year’s score of 97 out of 100. Here’s a breakdown of how we got here… and how that score might change.

Non-discrimination laws

This category looks at whether LGBTQ+ discrimination is prohibited by law in areas of employment, housing, and public accommodation. San Jose achieved a 30 out of 30 for our laws across the state, county, and municipality, and received bonus points for single-occupancy all-gender facilities and protections against youth conversion therapy.

Municipality as employer

Cities can achieve points for inclusive employment policies like trans-inclusive healthcare policies and non-discrimination in city employment. San Jose got a 26 out of 28. (We lost two points in the “inclusive workplace” subcategory.)


We’ve got pride in place.

Photo via @danceofpeace

Services and programs

This section considers the city’s efforts to include LGBTQ+ folks in city services and programs. San Jose scored 7 out of 12. We gained two extra bonus points since last year for providing services to LGBTQ+ youth.

Law enforcement

Looking at the relationship between law enforcement and the LGBTQ+ community, San Jose earned 22 out of 22.

Leadership on LGBTQ+ equality

This section looks at city leadership’s commitment to advocacy and inclusion. San Jose got an 8 out of 8.

We gained two more bonus points than last year for having an openly LGBTQ+ leader.

Other studies like this

The HRC isn’t the only organization tracking San Jose’s inclusion of the LGBTQ+ community. Explore these locally conducted studies for comparison:

Looking ahead

San Jose would achieve a higher score from the HRC with efforts like having an LGBTQ+ liaison in the city executive’s office and offering services to the transgender community and LGBTQ+ people experiencing homelessness.

If you want to get involved, here are some local organizations that support the LGBTQ+ community.

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