“I was horrified by the news that Mephedrone had taken, it seems, the life of another young person, Jamie McKee, last weekend. The loss of a teenage boy in such tragic circumstances must be absolutely devastating for his family and his friends, and I do offer them my very deepest sympathy at this time of great sorrow and pain.
Lady Hermon continued: “While I welcome the news this week from the Home Secretary, Alan Johnson, that the legislation will soon be amended to outlaw the sale, use and distribution of Mephedrone and other so-called ‘legal highs’, I must say I’m extremely disappointed that the Government hasn’t moved much more quickly to tackle the scourge of these lethal drugs.
Last November, when the NIO Justice Minister, Paul Goggins, visited FASA (Forum for Action on Substance Abuse) at the Fountain Centre on Queen’s Parade, the staff there and the mothers, whose children were at risk from Mephedrone, did argue strongly and passionately for these ‘legal highs’ to be made illegal.
Quite why there has been such a delay, I just don’t know at the moment. I did, however, write to the Northern Ireland Office some weeks ago demanding a full explanation for the delay by the Home Office in outlawing these horribly dangerous drugs. We musn’t have any more premature and avoidable deaths of our young people through taking Mephedrone and its ilk.”
April 1st, 2010