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Post submitted by Collen Kutney, State and Municipal Program Manager

For the first time, The Municipal Equality Index (MEI), in conjunction with the Equality Federation, asked members and supporters to vote on the new cities to be rated.

The MEI is a nationwide evaluation of municipal laws, policies and services and rates them on the basis of their inclusiveness of LGBTQ people who live and work there. Previously, the MEI chose cities based on several criteria including the 50 state capitals, the top 200 largest cities in the country, cities with a high proportion of same-sex couples, the top five largest cities in each state and the cities with the two largest public universities (undergraduate and graduate enrollment).

The MEI rates each municipality in five categories: Non-Discrimination Laws, Municipality as Employer, Municipal Services, Law Enforcement and Relationship with the LGBTQ Community.

With the help of the Equality Federation and state and local advocates, five cities were nominated in each state. Members and supporters were asked to choose two cities they would like to see rated in the MEI. The nominees were small and large cities from different regions of the state.

Ninety-eight cities will be added to the MEI to create a total of 506 cities rated across the country. The 2016 MEI will be published in the fall. To see the full 2015 MEI, click here.

Here are the 98 cities that will be added to the MEI:

Florence, Alabama

Hoover, Alabama

Homer, Alaska

Wasilla, Alaska

Avondale, Arizona

Flagstaff, Arizona

Conway, Arkansas

Eureka Springs, Arkansas

Palm Desert, California

Santa Monica, California

Aspen, Colorado

Littleton, Colorado

Fairfield, Connecticut

Norwalk, Connecticut

Bethany Beach, Delaware

Milford, Delaware

Coral Gables, Florida

Daytona Beach, Florida

Roswell, Georgia

Sandy Springs, Georgia

Coeur d'Alene, Idaho

Moscow, Idaho

Carbondale, Illinois

Peoria, Illinois

Muncie, Indiana

Terre Haute, Indiana

Dubuque, Iowa

West Des Moines, Iowa

Emporia, Kansas

Hutchinson, Kansas

Berea, Kentucky

Morehead, Kentucky

Alexandria, Louisiana

Monroe, Louisiana

Columbia (Howard County), Maryland

Hagerstown, Maryland

Brunswick, Maine

Scarborough, Maine

Arlington, Massachusetts

Salem, Massachusetts

Kalamazoo, Michigan

Traverse City, Michigan

Eden Prairie, Minnesota

Minnetonka, Minnesota

Bay St. Louis, Mississippi

Ocean Springs, Mississippi

Cape Girardeau, Missouri

St. Charles, Missouri

Kalispell, Montana

Whitefish, Montana

Fremont, Nebraska

North Platte, Nebraska

Elko, Nevada

Mesquite, Nevada

Keene, New Hampshire

Portsmouth, New Hampshire

Hoboken, New Jersey

Princeton, New Jersey

Farmington, New Mexico

Gallup, New Mexico

Ithaca, New York

White Plains, New York

Carborro, North Carolina

Wilmington, North Carolina

Jamestown, North Dakota

Mandan, North Dakota

Dublin, Ohio

Lakewood, Ohio

Edmond, Oklahoma

Moore, Oklahoma

Ashland, Oregon

Bend, Oregon

Carlisle, Pennsylvania

Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania

Narragansett, Rhode Island

Newport, Rhode Island

Greenville, South Carolina

Myrtle Beach, South Carolina

Spearfish, South Dakota

Mitchell, South Dakota

Franklin, Tennessee

Johnson City, Tennessee

Denton, Texas

Round Rock, Texas

Park City, Utah

Ogden City, Utah

Brattleboro , Vermont

Winooski, Vermont

Charlottesville, Virginia

Roanoke, Virginia

Bellingham, Washington

Kent, Washington

Charles Town, West Virginia

Lewisburg, West Virginia

Appleton, Wisconsin

OshKosh, Wisconsin

Jackson, Wyoming

Sheridan, Wyoming

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