LGBT+ Business Climate Score

Out Leadership’s Business Climate Index for the 50 United States is an assessment of states’ performance on LGBT+ inclusion. It measures the impact government policies and prevalent attitudes have on the LGBT+ people residing in each state, quantifying the economic imperatives for inclusion and the costs of discrimination. It equips business leaders and policymakers with a clear sense of the most impactful steps states can take to make themselves more hospitable to forward-thinking, innovative, inclusive businesses.


out of a possible 100 points

Legal & Nondiscrimination Protection

Changing the gender markers on a birth certificate in Nebraska requires surgery. Changing them on driver’s licenses requires “reassignment procedures required for social gender recognition.” There are no statewide LGBT+ anti-discrimination protections.

6.3 / 20
Youth & Family Support

Conversion therapy is currently legal in Nebraska. Youths in foster care are not protected from discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity. Same-sex couples are allowed to foster and adopt, but religiously affiliated adoption agencies are allowed to use religious concerns when placing children.

10.33 / 20
Political & Religious Attitudes

The state’s Governor and U.S. Senators have consistently opposed LGBT+ diversity and inclusion in their speech and voting records. There is no religious exemption law in Nebraska.

8 / 20
Health Access & Safety

Trans healthcare coverage is specifically excluded from Medicaid and from state employee insurance, and it’s not a protected right for private plans. There are hate crimes protections on the basis of sexual orientation and gender but not gender identity.

6 / 20
Work Environment & Employment

14% of transgender employees in Nebraska reported being harassed in the past year due to their gender identity, and 16% report mistreatment such as being told to present in the wrong gender in order to keep a job. 25% of LGBT+ individuals in Nebraska reported food insecurity, double the rate for non- LGBT+ people (12%). Up to 24% of LGBT+ individuals in Nebraska reported making less than $24,000 per year. 6% of LGBT+ individuals report unemployment in Nebraska, almost double the rate for non-LGBT+ people (3%).

13 / 20
A Note on Methodology

Download this report to learn how and why Out Leadership created the LGBT+ Business Climate Index for the 50 U.S. States, with important details about our methodology, including our data standards and practices.

Our Methodology
Talking Points
  • When polled, 3.8% of Nebraskans openly identified as LGBT+. Conservatively, that’s LGBT+ personal income of $3.8 billion – it’s a market my business can’t afford to ignore.
  • When LGBT+ employees don’t feel welcome at work, they’re less likely to stay, and employee turnover is a drag on the state economy and business competitiveness. It costs companies an average of $9,106 to replace an employee in Nebraska, and it can cost up to $470,600 to replace senior executives. Nebraska and the businesses operating there have strong financial incentives to create inclusive workplaces in the interest of keeping these costs down.
  • Nondiscrimination policies allow LGBT+ people to participate more fully in the economy and companies that provide workplace protections can maximize the value of LGBT+ employee contributions.
  • Millennial and Gen Z consumers prefer to do business with companies with LGBT+ friendly advertising and policies – 54% say they’re more likely to choose an LGBT+ inclusive brand over a competitor – which is why it’s important that Nebraska continue to foster a business environment where being inclusive is supported.
  • State leaders should set a welcoming, not a stigmatizing tone.
  • Nebraska has a regressive attitude towards trans-inclusive health coverage. Treating trans people as unequal makes us look complicit if we choose to do business in Nebraska – equality is good for everyone’s bottom line.
Impact of LGBT+ Discrimination on Business and Talent
  • 1
    No Risk
  • 2
    Low Risk
  • 3
    Moderate Risk
  • 4
    Notable Risk
  • 5
    High Risk

For more context around these scores, and to learn more about the criteria we used to assess how state laws, actions and attitudes toward LGBT+ people create business and talent risks, please visit

  • 5
    High Risk
Companies incur high risk to their brands by operating in Nebraska, where there are no statewide LGBT+ inclusive nondiscrimination protections and local protections often fail to pass into law. The state’s governor and senators have negative voting records on LGBT+ issues, and stand vocally against LGBT+ interests.
  • 4
    Notable Risk
There’s notable risk that LGBT+ or strong ally clients might pull their business from companies operating in Nebraska, in light of the state’s business climate and reputation.
  • 4
    Notable Risk
LGBT+ professionals are likely to consider Nebraska’s legal and social environment unfriendly. There is no statewide LGBT+ inclusive nondiscrimination law and changing gender markers on documents requires surgery.
  • 4
    Notable Risk
There is notable risk involved in marketing to the LGBT+ community in Nebraska.
  • 2
    Low Risk
The state has had only one discriminatory bill filed in recent years, so appetite appears low. We assess a low risk of future attempts at introduction of negative legislation or similar events.
Socio-cultural Environment of LGBT+ People:

Status of LGBT+ Organizing and Community

  • – Star City Pride, in Lincoln, and Heartland Pride, in Omaha, are the state’s two main annual pride events.
  • – The state’s first LGBT+ advocacy organization, OutNebraska, formed in 2019.

Cultural Views of the LGBT+ Community

  • – 51% of Nebraskans oppose small-business exemptions that would allow discrimination against LGBT+ people.
  • – 65% of Nebraskans favor LGBT+ anti-discrimination laws.