SHIPROCK — The Navajo Nation is giving its communities the chance to learn more about its courts and jails from an insider's perspective.

And no one has to get sued or arrested to do so.

The tribe and local law enforcement are working together to open up their courts and jails for the public to learn more about how the system works.

Some courts and jails throughout the tribe have already hosted annual public visitation days. The courts call their events Justice Day, and the jails' events are called Law Day.

Shiprock's Justice Day is scheduled for April 12, and its Law Day is May 3. Both are scheduled to begin at 9 a.m. and end around 3 p.m. Shiprock's Justice Day will be held at the courthouse, and Law Day at Shiprock High School.

During the first event, focusing on the court system, visitors will learn about the different kinds of courts that exist in the system, as well as the people who work in them.

Participants can also learn about the differences between tribal, state and federal law.

During Law Day, people can learn about the other side of the law, including the police, fire and criminal investigations departments.

Many of the volunteers will show the audience the weapons they use to enforce the law, as well as how and when they use them.


For more information about Justice Day, contact the Shiprock Judicial District at 505-368-1270. For more information about Law Day, contact the Shiprock Police Department at 505-368-1350.

Both the jail and courthouse are located at the intersection of U.S. Highway 64 and U.S. Highway 491 in Shiprock. Shiprock High School, where Law Day will take place, is located on U.S. Highway 64 past downtown Shiprock, toward the Arizona border.

Jenny Kane can be reached at; 505-564-4636. Follow her on Twitter @jenny_kane.