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to Section One | to Arts & Entertainment
posted Friday, June 30, 2017 - Volume 45 Issue 26
Madrid is the most welcoming city for LGBT folks, Beijing the least
Section One
ALL STORIES
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Madrid is the most welcoming city for LGBT folks, Beijing the least

by Mike Andrew - SGN Staff Writer

Strangely enough, Catholic Madrid is the most welcoming city in the world for LGBT folks, while Beijing is the least.

These ratings are based on a survey by the German housing website Nestpick and were published by Newsweek magazine. One hundred world cities were included in the survey.

Madrid is followed by Amsterdam, Toronto, Tel Aviv, and London. New York City and San Francisco topped the list for US cities (at numbers 9 and 10 worldwide). Seattle came in at 55.

Just ahead of Beijing at the bottom of the list are Belgrade, Bratislava, Sofia, and Zagreb - all Slavic cities. However, Johannesburg (number 94) was the only African city included in the survey.

'We asked over 2,500 participants from each city to give three lifestyle factors a rating out of five stars: the strength of their city's gay dating scene, the quality of its LGBT nightlife, and the openness of their fellow citizens,' Nestpick explained.

'Cities needed to average at least two out of five stars for each of the three lifestyle factors in order to qualify the final shortlist.'

After narrowing down the list, the Nestpick pollsters added a fourth category - safety.

'This used public data provided by police departments of each of the 100 cities on the official number of hate crimes reported in 2016 per capita,' they explained. 'The city with the lowest number of crimes reported was awarded a maximum safety score of 5, and the city with the highest number of crimes reported was awarded a minimum score of 1.'

Finally, the survey considered the civil rights of LGBT residents in each of the 40 countries whose cities were included.

'We conducted an in-depth review of regional and national legislation (as of May 2017) affecting members of the LGBT community in each of the respective countries,' Nestpick said. 'A maximum score of 5 was awarded to countries that allow same-sex marriage, adoption by same-sex couples, LGBT citizens to serve in the military, [and] anyone to change their gender identity, and ban all anti-LGBT discrimination.'

The sum of all five factors determined the overall score. Madrid scored 4 or more in each of the five categories, while Beijing scored between 1.84 and 2.15.

Seattle scored in the mid-3 range for our dating scene, nightlife, and openness, and a 4 for LGBT rights.

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