SYRACUSE, N.Y.—Mayor Stephanie A. Miner announced today a new partnership between the City, social entrepreneur Peter Thum and Liberty United (www.libertyunited.com) to increase awareness and reduce the prevalence of gun violence in the City of Syracuse. Liberty United, a company founded by Thum, transforms the remnants of guns and bullets collected in cities across the United States into jewelry and art. Syracuse is one of the initial cities giving weapons seized by its police department to Liberty United. A portion of the proceeds from Liberty United sales support programs working to reduce gun violence across the country.
“I am pleased to welcome Liberty United into the City of Syracuse,” said Syracuse Mayor Stephanie A. Miner. “Witnessing the destructive effect gun violence has in our communities, any effort to raise awareness and get guns off our streets is important. I appreciate the hard work of the Syracuse Police Department and the efforts of Peter Thum and Liberty United to address gun violence in our cities.”
The first creative collaboration of Liberty United, launched in June, 2013, was with Philip and Courtney Crangi for the Giles and Brother Railroad Spike Collection. The company recently announced its second collaboration, Liberty United x Pamela Love, which will be available this fall.
“The mission of Liberty United is to raise awareness and to support the people and programs who are working every day to make our cities safer,” said Peter Thum, founder of Liberty United. “By taking illegal guns and bullets off of the streets and transforming them into wearable art, we are spreading the word about an important issue that many U.S. cities face and funding programs that are making a difference. We are honored to be working with Mayor Miner and the City of Syracuse to fund programs that will help this community.”
The collections are available on Liberty United’s website, www.libertyunited.com. When purchasing an item, customers may select Syracuse as the beneficiary city, earmarking profits from their purchase directly for Syracuse-based partner organizations. Other partner cities currently include Newburgh, New York and Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Liberty United’s goal is to expand to additional partner cities in the future.
A Syracuse partner program has not yet been selected but the City, in conjunction with Liberty United, is in the process of researching, vetting and choosing a local non-profit organization which serves the mission of raising awareness and reducing gun violence on the streets.
About Liberty United
Liberty United is a humanitarian venture created by Peter Thum and his wife, actress Cara Buono. Peter Thum is the co-founder and CEO of Fonderie 47, which creates jewelry from AK47s to fund disarmament in Africa. Fonderie 47 has destroyed more than 34,000 assault rifles in Africa. Thum also founded Ethos Water, which was acquired by Starbucks, and served as Vice President of Starbucks Corporation and Director of the Starbucks Foundation. Ethos Water has donated more than $7 million and has helped approximately half a million people around the world gain access to safe water, sanitation, and hygiene education. He has founded and overseen various not-for-profit organizations dedicated to solving global crises.