One Equal World

10 Most Gay-Friendly Employment States

Posted on: October 17, 2013

LGBT flag

Washington, Connecticut, and New York were among the most LGBT friendly employment states.
Image: Shutterstock

As the LGBTQ community and its allies cheer for small state-specific victories in marriage equality, it is important to remember that safe spaces are still constantly being threatened by the hate of some individuals. Just because same-sex marriage is allowed in certain states, it doesn’t mean that those states are exempt from LGBTQ discrimination. Sadly, intolerance and discrimination is often still present in schools, public spaces, and for many gay and lesbian adults, in the workplace.

Recently, the employment law website XpertHR conducted a survey that evaluated each state and its ability to be LGBT-friendly in the workplace. Ranked in no particular order, XpertHR’s “To 10 LGBT-Employment Friendly States survey” reveals the places in our country where LGBT peoples are likely to be the most accepted and protected in the workplace. The survey was based on marriage equality rankings, workplace discrimination protections, and benefits for those with same-sex partners.

The northeastern United States had the largest number of LGBT employment-friendly states; New Hampshire, despite its laws that recognize same-sex marriage, was the only state in New England that didn’t make the “Top 10” list. According to XpertHR, “Employment opportunities and protections for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender individuals have been on the rise in recent years but vary considerably from state to state. Some states mandate certain legal protections and benefits for LGBTs explicitly while others offer no protections or benefits,” of the state-specific variance of protective laws set in place for LGBT peoples in the workplace.

States that made the top ten list include: Connecticut, California, Iowa, Maine, Massachusetts, Minnesota, New York, Rhode Island, Vermont, and Washington. According to Peggy Carter-Ward, XpertHR’s Head of Content, “These states are leaders in safeguarding LGBTs against discrimination in the workplace – by passing gay rights ordinances, permitting same-sex marriage, providing benefits to same-sex partners, and/or outlawing hate crimes.” Hopefully these leaders in LGBT workplace justice will inspire inclusion in other parts of the country.


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