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Heinrich Statement On Senate Passage Of His Legislation To Safeguard Sacred Tribal Items, Bill Now Heads To President’s Desk To Become Law

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Martin Heinrich (D-N.M.) issued the following statement after he passed by unanimous consent on the Senate Floor his bipartisan Safeguard Tribal Objects of Patrimony (STOP) Act, which now heads to the President’s desk to be signed into law:

“As I drafted the STOP Act, I worked closely with New Mexico's Pueblos, the Jicarilla and Mescalero Apache Nations, and the Navajo Nation. I'm proud that the legislation earned strong support across Indian Country and across party lines in both the House and Senate. Over these last six years, Senator Lisa Murkowski and I successfully built bipartisan momentum to get the STOP Act over the finish line and to the President’s desk. There is a clear difference between supporting American Indian art ethically and legally as opposed to dealing or exporting items that Tribes have identified as essential and sacred pieces of their cultural heritage. Once the STOP Act is signed into law, we will take an important step forward in halting the illegal and immoral trade of those culturally significant items and returning stolen pieces to their rightful owners.”