The Advisory Council on Historic Preservation (ACHP) has approved a policy statement for federal, state, and local government entities facing decisions about the management or disposition of controversial commemorative works, such as memorials, statues, markers, or other landscape features honoring divisive historical figures or events.

The ACHP voted at its March 22 business meeting in Washington, D.C. to approve the policy statement to assist these entities in achieving a balance between the past, present, and future in the case of these commemorative works. This includes federal agencies complying with the review requirements of Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act.

Through this action, the ACHP seeks to promote informed decision making and responsible stewardship of controversial but nevertheless historically significant commemorative works. The ACHP acknowledges it is essential for decision makers to directly confront history’s difficult chapters; consult broadly with the public to ascertain contemporary community views; consider a range of management alternatives; and promote public education regarding all aspects (positive and negative) of the nation’s history.

The primary mission of the ACHP is to encourage historic preservation in the government and across the nation. The agency serves as policy advisor to the President and Congress and recommends administrative and legislative improvements to protect the nation’s rich heritage.

Read the policy statement here.