Attorney Dick Atkins, the so-called “Houdini of Fast Escapes from Foreign Prisons,” has spent more than 28 years helping Americans get out of legal trouble abroad — helping to win freedom for over a thousand Americans held in foreign custody.
His services are sought by congressmen seeking help for detained constituents, travel insurance companies looking into high-stakes claims, people who call his hotline, which offers around-the-clock legal advice, and human rights organizations like Amnesty International who refer those seeking help for friends or loved ones in trouble abroad. Some of his clients are travelers to developing countries who have found themselves in jail after breaking laws they didn’t know existed.
Through his experience, Mr. Atkins has become proficient in describing the world’s most notorious and unexpected tourist traps, the worst prisons on Earth and how to avoid getting sent to them. Below is his advice should one become Locked up Abroad. Read more
Thank you Kare 11 Sunrise Show, and Media Relations, Inc., for the opportunity to protect and inform America’s next generation about safety risks before they go abroad. There isn’t enough gratitude in those words!Here’s a recap and links to some awesome tools to help our students ‘StaySafe’:
Get your ASAPP Checklist. A Student Abroad Preparedness Plan Checklist includes more than 50 checkpoints to insure your abroad experiences fulfills its promises. Please don’t leave America without it.
American students abroad are often cash-strapped and under-insured. Save money and Fly for Good! Fly for Good is a strategic partner and proud sponsor of ClearCause. Every time you book a flight with Fly for Good you get personal assistance and their ‘lowest possible’ airfare. Make sure to mention that you heard about Fly for Good from ClearCause and we’ll get a donation to help students StaySafe! To request a quote please contact Linda Furry. Use the money you save to buy trip insurance with StuCard and Volunteer Card…
TravelGuard underwrites the insurance for StuCard and Volun+eer Card. We are working together on a pick list of insurance offerings to offer the best possible coverage while you are in a foreign country. Until then, please be aware that you may need more insurance than StuCard provides. StuCard offers insurance to repatriate you if necessary, emergency medical insurance, protects your stuff and offers a toll-free international help line with a translator to assist you when needed. ClearCause Founder Sheryl Hill relied on this insurance personally when she fell on a sharp in Chile. The best news, these guys are in our backyard in Burnsville, MN. We can knock on their door and work together to advocate for you. ClearCause receives a donation when you buy your StuCard from this link. Thank YOU!
According to an article in Doane Line, May 12, 2013 published by ‘Beat Reporting Class’. The reporting class was doing an audit of public records on Doane’s campus and within the communities of Crete and Wilber to determine compliance with state and federal law. They reported Doane Safety Office failed, breaking both state and federal laws by failing to provide an ‘incident report’ without question.
The Clery Act and the Nebraska Open Records Law both require colleges and universities to provide public records concerning campus and community-based incidents upon request without question. The article reported that safety administrator Michael Dixon, “.. demanded an email request for the documents before safety would comply. An email was sent as requested, and following another visit to the Safety Office an email reply containing the information was sent a week later.” Read more
Fifteen year old Cara Munn had no idea that her life was about to change forever when she went to China on a school-supervised trip in the summer of 2007. While overseas, Munn was bitten by a tick and later diagnosed with tick-borne encephalitis. Her private school, Hotchkiss School of Lakeville, Connecticut, did not enforce necessary safety methods. They let their students walk through a wooded area in China known to be infested with ticks carrying encephalitis as well as other insect-transmitted diseases. Munn now has significant brain damage and is unable to speak. Her life is forever changed.
The Bridgeport Federal Jury ruled in favor of Munn awarding $41.7 million in response to a personal injury lawsuit Munn’s family brought against Hotchkiss School. Hotchkiss School is planning to appeal, as attorneys represent tick-borne encephalitis is a rare disease and the school should not be responsible for warning students or requiring protective measures.
“We care deeply about all our students,” the school said in a statement. “We make every effort to protect them . . . We put great care and thought into planning and administering off-campus programs and we extend the same care to students on these trips as to students on campus.”
Yet others feel differently. “Hotchkiss failed to take basic safety precautions to protect the minor children in its care,” Munn’s attorney Antonio Ponvert III said. “I hope that this case will help alert all schools who sponsor overseas trips for minors that they need to check the CDC for disease risks in the areas where they will be traveling, and that they must advise children in their care to use repellant and wear proper clothing when necessary. Cara’s injuries were easily preventable.”
Klimas, Liz. “Student Wins $41. 7 Million Settlement for Disease She Contracted on School Trip.” The Blaze 29 Mar. 2013: n. pag. Web. 3 May 2013
Image ABC News, “Woman Who Contracted Encephalitis on School Trip Awarded $41.7M.” ABC News pag. Web 29 March 29 2013 (Courtesy of Munn Family)