WASHINGTON – On Wednesday, June 24, at 2:30 p.m. ET/ 12:30 p.m. MT, U.S. Senator Martin Heinrich’s (D-N.M.) legislation to prohibit the exporting of sacred Native American items and increase penalties for stealing and illegally trafficking tribal cultural patrimony will be included in a key hearing on pending legislation for the Senate Committee on Indian Affairs.
The bicameral, bipartisan Safeguard Tribal Objects of Patrimony (STOP) Act, introduced and championed by Senator Heinrich and U.S. Senator Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska), continues to gain momentum and widespread, bipartisan support. The bill has been endorsed by organizations and tribes across Indian Country.
“My legislation will increase penalties for stealing and illegally trafficking tribal cultural patrimony. It will also prohibit exporting these objects and create a tribal working group to help federal agencies better understand the scope of the problem and how to solve it,” said Heinrich. “I am proud to see this bipartisan legislation gain momentum as we take steps to stop the trade of culturally significant items and repatriate stolen pieces to their rightful owners.”