JoCo Notes: Overland Parks earns perfect ‘equality index’ score

The stage at Thompson Park in downtown Overland Park lit up in rainbow colors. Photo via city of Overland Park.

Welcome to Tuesday, Blue Valley!

🌧 Today’s forecast: Mostly cloudy during the day and mostly clear at night. High: 47. Low: 26.

🚨 One thing to know

Overland Park scores high on equality, according to The Human Rights Campaign.

The city received a perfect score on the international advocacy group’s Municipal Equality Index, an annual scorecard examining how inclusive municipal laws, policies, and services are of LGBTQ people who live and work there, earning 100 out of a possible 100 points.

This year’s index assessed dozens of cities across the U.S.

“The score is a testament to our commitment to and work for the equality and inclusivity of all our residents. This achievement is a reminder that in Overland Park, everyone is welcome,” said Overland Park Mayor Curt Skoog in a press release.

The 2023 score accounts for recent city efforts, including the designation of an LGBTQ+ liaison, providing services to LGBTQ+ youth, providing resources to LGBTQIA+ foster parents and foster children and diversity training requirements for the Overland Park Police Department and other city employees.

It also took into consideration other factors, like nondiscrimination initiatives for city employees, public facilities that have all-gender restrooms and transgender-inclusive healthcare benefits, among others.

Olathe, the only other Johnson County city on this year’s index, received a final equality score of 69.

Lawrence also received a perfect score of 100. Wichita totaled 98 points. Kansas City, Kansas, received 63 points.

🚀 Post’s top stories

  1. JoCo Notes: Donna Kelce to appear at Overland Park Raising Cane’s
  2. Blue Valley adds new high school graduation requirements
  3. Overland Park’s new Galleria 115 plan to bring more entertainment
  4. Johnson County looks to convert abandoned factory into trail hub
  5. 🥧 5 to Try: Post readers pick best pie in JoCo ahead of Thanksgiving

📸 A thousand words

Johnson County Library’s Central Resource Library branch is showing the art of bicycles with its latest exhibit “The Art of Biking.” It showcases the cultural, political, communal and historical aspects of bike riding – both locally and beyond our borders. Artists included are: Ruthie Wu (whose art is pictured here), Katrina Dudek-Schubach, Kimbrough Higgins, Randall Thornton and Maria Voldman. It will be on display until December 21.

Bicycle art
Bicycle art by Ruthie Wu. Photo via Johnson County Library website.