California governor signs laws compelling universities to report return of Native American remains

By Sophie Austin THE ASSOCIATED PRESS SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP)- Gov. Gavin Newsom signed two laws Tuesday intended to compel California’s public university systems to make progress in their review and return of Native American remains and artifacts. Decades-old state and federal legislation, known as repatriation laws, require government entities to return these items to tribes. Those artifacts could include prayer sticks or wolves’ skins that have been used for ceremonies. But the state auditor found in recent years that many campuses have not done so due to a lack of funding or of clear protocols from chancellors’ offices. Democratic Assemblymember James C. Ramos, the first Native American in the California Legislature, said campuses’ failure to return remains to tribes has denied “the Indian people the right to bring closure to…

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