Sue Cox
Sue Cox / Smart UK, Survivors Voice Europe
Co-founder of Survivors Voice Europe and Director of SMART UK, training healthcare professionals in addiction for 21 years.
Sue Cox About Sue

About Sue.


Sue Cox OBE M.A.A.C

Director-Founder SMART-UK

Co-founder Survivors Voice – Europe

Sue Cox has been awarded an OBE in the new King’s first birthday honours. Click here to find out more.

“Passion” is the word that best describes Sue Cox, whether it is in her teaching, writing, practice, or advocacy.

Sue is passionate about recovery, or “restoration” as she prefers to call it, from the depths of addiction to the devastating damage caused by childhood abuse and trauma.

Hers is a story of transformation, and she believes that anyone can be restored to their full, and beautiful potential, even beyond their wildest dreams. Sue says: 

“We are all made of the same “stardust”, the same as the queen, the pope, and everyone else. We are, each one of us, a unique entity and a precious irreplaceable part of the Universe, and as such deserve the very best!

In 2010 Sue Cox was awarded a “Lifetimes achievement award” for her contribution to the field of addiction treatment. In 2014 she received an “Inspirational Woman of the Year award” for human rights.

  Sue is a reputable and respected Health care professional, a practitioner of Chinese medicine, a counselor, teacher, and the head of a large teaching organisation -SMART-UK who teaches the neuroscience of addiction as well as auricular acupuncture for substance misuse.

She now offers an exciting new positive understanding of addiction in her new book

 “The Hidden Superpower of Addiction”

Which uses Eastern wisdom with Western science and lived experience in celebration of the addicted brain! 

Sue says: “Continually seeing addicted people as “ill” is limiting and disempowering, and a hindrance to real restoration. Addicts have amazing skills and untapped potential.”   

She is also the co-author of the first scientific book on auricular acupuncture. :

 “Auricular Acupuncture and Addiction” 

The only book to offer a scientific hypothesis for this valuable adjunctive treatment.

Sue, and her colleagues in SMART-UK, have created a programme that has been embraced by mainstream medicine. The SMART-UK programme is used in UK hospitals, mental health units, community services, the military, and 128 UK prisons. Sue has personally taught over twenty thousand healthcare workers She says:”I am privileged to have worked with amazing people, who have taught me as I have taught them”

More recently Sue has created a “Five Star Wellbeing” programme for prisoners, an exciting and innovative coaching programme which is seeing designated prisoners become “5 Star Wellbeing coaches” learning all of the theories and skills for using natural techniques to help their peers.

Sue is a 74 years old grandmother who also was a single mother of six. She is a Survivor of catholic clergy abuse.

Her abuse at the hands of a catholic priest from the age of ten until thirteen, resulted in her downward spiral of mental and emotional disturbance, Alcoholism, Drug Addiction, an Eating disorder, and serious self-harming. She had six children and was left alone with them when they were all under twelve.

It has taken her many years to climb out of that pit of despair, and regain some real recovery.She is in her 46th year of recovery.  She is determined to help others climb out of that pit too, take back their power, and soar.

In 2010 when receiving her first award, she found herself in the middle of a lot of publicity. She chose that occasion to talk, publicly, for the first time, about her own experience of abuse. She had battled alcoholism, addiction, self-harm, and eating disorder escaped a violent and abusive first marriage, but the sexual abuse at the hands of a priest was the one that had set the whole self-destruct pattern in motion.

She decided that this was the time to stand and be counted in the fight against the church and its criminal predators in the hope that her stance might help others.

That stance saw her making the first rallying speech of the “Protest the pope” march in 2010, where 20,000 people dedicated that march to survivors of catholic clergy abuse. She took part in a mainstream television documentary “The trouble with the pope” which coincided with the pope’s visit to England.

Later she travelled to Rome in answer to the call from the survivors from the USA, for other survivors to meet in the shadow of the vatican. Survivors from 14 countries attended that meeting.

 The meeting in Rome was life-changing. Among those gathered were 70 deaf and speech impaired survivors from the Provolo Institute in Verona, all of whom had been seriously and serially abused by the priests and nuns who were supposed to be caring for them.

They had NO voice! This was the first time they had “spoken” openly about their abuses. Sue felt an immediate connection with them and has since supported them, and participated in their annual rallies. 

It was in Rome also that she met and made a lasting connection with Ton Leerschool, another like-minded activist survivor from Holland, and together they formed Survivors Voice – Europe. They vowed to help other survivors to find their voices. They support survivors worldwide, and self fund their activities. 

Since then she has traveled the world, and participated in many rallies, conferences and has become a well-known advocate and activist in the fight for survivors of abuse.

In May 2013 she and Ton travelled to the UN in Geneva at the request of the UN Committee for the Rights of the Child to give evidence against the vatican on its breaches of several articles in the Convention of the rights of the child. That evidence resulted in the scathing report from the UN regarding the abysmal record of the vatican in handling clergy abuse crimes and cover-ups.

A victory for abuse Survivors worldwide!

They then submitted evidence to the UN committee against torture which also resulted in the vatican being once again found in breach of several articles of the UN’s committee against torture

Sue is a regular speaker at conferences in the UK and abroad and makes many TV and radio contributions. She has spoken in the Italian and Polish parliaments and been featured in a film in Poland and on Russian television.

Because of her professional background and research, Sue’s particular passion is the education of everyone into the true severity of damage caused by addiction and that worst betrayal of trust which is childhood abuse. These crimes are often trivialized and the damage underestimated. 

Sue is a member of The British Humanist Association, and is a patron of the “Pink Triangle” and is on the board of the “Godless Grace Foundation” founded by her friend David Orenstein a professor of  anthropology from New York. She has plans to take her workshops to Australia and further and continues with her passionate contribution to the empowerment and recovery of Addicts, clergy abuse Survivors, and intends to do so until her last breath.