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New Orleans Partners with Liberty United to Benefit At-Risk Youth and Stop Gun Violence

by Tyler Gamble

October 19, 2016

Categories: Community


New Orleans Partners with Liberty United to Benefit At-Risk Youth and Stop Gun Violence

The City of New Orleans today (Oct. 19), announced a partnership with Liberty United, a New York-based social enterprise that transforms illegal guns and bullets into handcrafted jewelry with the goal of ending gun violence and protecting at-risk kids across the country. New Orleans is the fifth U.S. city to partner with Liberty United, which donates proceeds from sales to non-profit organizations in its partner communities. Through this partnership, at least 20% of the proceeds from sales of Liberty United jewelry will benefit NOLA FOR LIFE, Mayor Landrieu’s comprehensive murder reduction strategy, which partners with local non-profit groups dedicated to protecting kids and fighting gun violence in the greater New Orleans area.

“This partnership with Liberty United is a win-win for our department and the communities we serve,” said NOPD Superintendent Michael Harrison. “By taking illegal firearms that have been seized and turning them into a wearable statement, we are not only encouraging a dialogue about ending gun violence in our city, we are supporting the organizations that are on the front lines helping youth in our community.”

Once guns within the New Orleans Police Department’s custody are no longer needed for investigative or legal purposes, judges typically order their destruction. Moving forward, a portion of the guns within the Police Department will be broken apart, rendered inoperable and sent to Liberty United to be manufactured into jewelry that makes a strong statement. 

“Liberty United’s mission is to take illegal guns off the street and remake them into powerful symbols of action that fund programs to save and protect children,” said Peter Thum, founder of Liberty United. “The City of New Orleans and Police Department Superintendent Michael Harrison have committed themselves to the development and support of programs that promote the well-being of kids and the safety of the community. We are excited to partner with this iconic and culturally rich city and help fund programs that are making a difference.”

When purchasing an item from Liberty United’s website, customers may select New Orleans as the beneficiary community, earmarking profits directly for partner organizations within the city.  At least 20% of proceeds generated from Liberty United jewelry sales benefit non-profit programs. 

In New Orleans, Liberty United proceeds will be donated to the NOLA FOR LIFE Fund, which invests in community programs that provide critical human services for those with the highest risk of killing or being killed. Since its creation in 2012, the fund has been managed by the Greater New Orleans Foundation and partnered with the City of New Orleans to strategically address community needs related to murder reduction. NOLA FOR LIFE is founded on five key pillars: Stop the Shootings, Invest in Prevention, Promote Jobs and Opportunity, Strengthen the NOPD, and Get Involved and Rebuild Neighborhoods.

Other Liberty United partners currently include Syracuse and Newburgh, New York, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and Cook County (Chicago), Illinois. Liberty United is working to further expand its network of partner cities.