Meon Valley MP says legal highs are a ‘scourge on society’ as leaders back awareness campaign

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MPs have thrown their weight behind The News’ campaign to see legal highs wiped out from society.

Havant MP Alan Mak, who has already asked the home secretary to ensure local police forces like Hampshire have sufficient powers to enforce a blanket ban, said: ‘So-called legal highs are actually lethal highs.

‘They’re dangerous and anti-social, so I welcome The News’ campaign to ban legal highs.

‘I’ve raised residents’ concerns about legal highs in parliament already with the home office and the government said they’re committed to banning them.

‘I look forward to working with The News, the police and local councils to end the use of legal highs across Havant and the Solent region.’

It comes after a legal high store opened in Market Parade, Havant earlier this year, called Gypsy King’s Coffee Shop.

Another Gypsy King’s, in Commercial Road, Portsmouth, was ordered to close after police believed it was having a detrimental effect on the community.

Gosport MP Caroline Dinenage said: ‘People presume that “legal” means “safe”, and that as you can buy legal highs over the counter that they are going to be risk free.

‘But these substances can be just as lethal as their illegal counterparts, and we’ve seen tragic cases locally where people have died as a result of taking them.

‘I am proud of the work that local organisations such as Motiv8 are doing to educate young people about the dangers of legal highs.’

Meon Valley MP and Tory whip George Hollingbery said: ‘The government absolutely shares the concerns about so-called “legal highs” which are a scourge on society.

‘It is precisely for this reason that we have brought forward the Psychoactive Substances Bill, which will make it a criminal offence to produce, supply or import these psychoactive substances.

‘It also gives the police greater powers to tackle individuals and establishments who are making these substances available to the public.

‘I welcome The News highlighting this important issue with their campaign.’