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The Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act (NAGPRA)


The NAGPRA was passed in 1990 and is a two part law that allows the tribes to claim and bring home their ancestors that were removed from ancestral lands prior to 1990. The act of bringing home our ancestors remains is called repatriation. The second part of the law protects burials on federal land from development that takes place after 1990, and allows tribes to claim burials that are accidentally disturbed by any development after 1990 as well.

The CPP conducts consultation to repatriate our ancestors and their belongings from museums and repositories around the U.S. The CPP also consults with Federal agencies to try to ensure they do development without impacting burials and on cases where burials were impacted by accident or in cases where there was no other choice due to emergencies.


  • The CPP is responsible for consultation:
    • On the NAGPRA law itself
    • On cultural affiliation of Remains
    • On repatriation details once cultural affiliation is determined
    • On proper care, handling and housing of Remains
  • The CPP is responsible for repatriation of the following items:
    • Human remains
    • Associated funerary objects
    • Items of cultural patrimony
    • Sacred objects
  • The CPP is responsible to the Community:
    • To assist the Community with the annual reburial ceremony
    • To respectfully escort the Huhugam to the reburial group

Arizona State Burial Laws

NAGPRA is a very important law regarding burials, but its jurisdiction is specific to federal land, federal agencies or any project with a federal nexus.

AZ State burial laws mirror NAGPRA, but cover privately owned land or land over which the state has jurisdiction. To read more about these laws visit AZ State Burial Laws.

NAGPRA Resources

For more detailed information visit the National NAGPRA website.

For more detailed questions or concerns please contact Martha Martinez at martha.martinez@srpmic-nsn.gov or call (480) 362-6325.