I wrote my most-read post ever last month, much of which referred to religious abuse or trauma. At one point I mentioned Sue Cox, who was raped by Catholic clergy as a child – today as a founder of Survivors Voice Europe, she campaigns internationally against the actions of the Vatican and for victim support. In the video below from 2011 (promoting the Secular Europe March) she talks about her activism.
Recently Sue was nominated – then shortlisted – for one of this 2014’s Inspiration Awards, which recognise the contributions of outstanding women. The organisation’s site says this about her:
Sue is a powerful, tireless and inspirational advocate and speaker on the subject of childhood sexual abuse and the ensuing mental health effects of such trauma.
After recovering from clergy abuse which resulted in alcoholism, self-harm and an eating disorder, she is now a counsellor and healthcare tutor who heads up two organisations; SMART UK which teaches healthcare professionals within the NHS, armed forces and criminal justice system to understand about the brain and addiction; and an International Charity, Survivors Voice Europe, who spearheaded the campaign at the UN (CRC) to investigate the Vatican and the sexual abuse of children.
Not afraid to stand up for the rights of survivors and for people to truly understand the effects of abuse, Sue’s passion and focus is on empowerment, connection and identification of all survivors.
Having known Sue several years and admired her courageous vigour several more, I can testify to all the above. The work of secular campaigners against clerical abuse deserves recognition – so, moreover, does she.
To help secure her the award for which she’s been nominated, go to the organisers’ website and vote. It’s only possible to do this by voting in all seven other categories as well, and all the nominees have stories worth reading: it’s worth noting in particular that three other candidates (for two different awards), Jackie Moon, Bethan Rimmington and Ellie Morrissey, also work in the field of sexual abuse recovery.
All my respect to Sue Cox, and the very best of luck.