Stonewall has published its 2008 Workplace Equality Index, showcasing Britain’s top 100 employers for gay people.

Top employer for 2008 is Nacro, the national crime reduction charity. The Greater London Authority comes second.

Hampshire and Staffordshire police forces are joint third in the Index, which is based on a range of key indicators.

“This accolade is a tribute to the determined way in which Nacro has sought to appeal to as wide a range of potential staff as possible,” said Ben Summerskill, Stonewall’s chief executive.

“Many of the 1.7 million lesbian and gay people in the UK workforce now use the Index to see how their employer compares with others.

“We’re delighted to help them in their choice of workplace.”

Paul Cavadino, Nacro chief executive, commented:

“This shows that with commitment and determination a charity with few spare financial resources can provide a quality of support for gay staff which equals that of some of the biggest employers in the country.”

London Mayor Ken Livingstone said:

“I’m proud that the GLA is now rated amongst the most gay-friendly organisations in the country.

“I’d urge public and private sector employers alike to participate in Stonewall’s Workplace Equality Index and use it to develop best practice in their own organisations.”

Later today law firm Pinsent Masons will be named Most Improved Employer and HM Prison Service will win an award for Employee Network Group of the Year at a champagne reception at the London Transport Museum, sponsored by Transport for London.

The top 100 employers were ranked according to criteria ranging from implementation of effective equality policies to practical demonstration of good practice in recruitment and mentoring and how they engage with lesbian and gay staff, customers and service users.

The 240 employers who entered the 2008 Index were required to obtain a minimum score of 71 per cent to be placed in the top 100, up from 40 per cent in 2005.

“The spread of employers represented – including our first ever third sector winner and the first law firm in the top 100 – vividly demonstrates the huge range of organisations now engaged with Stonewall in promoting equality,” said David Shields, Stonewall’s director of Workplace Programmes.