Mitch Winehouse urges more drugs help

Mitch Winehouse and MP Keith Vaz Mitch Winehouse met with MP Keith Vaz to discuss drugs policy and treatment services

Amy Winehouse's father has urged politicians to do more for young people needing help with drug and alcohol problems.

Mitch Winehouse met with senior politicians in parliament to discuss drugs policy and treatment services.

"The government needs to look at the reallocation of funding to channel more in to help juveniles," Winehouse said.

Amy Winehouse, who struggled with drink and drug problems, was found dead at her London home last week.

The singer's family are currently awaiting the results of toxicology tests to establish the cause of her death at age 27.

On Monday, Mr Winehouse met with crime minister James Brokenshire and Keith Vaz, chairman of the Home Affairs Select Committee.

Mr Winehouse previously gave evidence to the committee during its inquiry into drugs in 2009.

Mr Vaz said that the singer's father "spoke from his heart" during the meeting and promised the select committee would look at the issue of drugs and alcohol rehabilitation for young people again.

"We always revisit our reports but I think it's important that we look again because it seems, from what he has said today, the level of support is not there and there appears to be an inconsistency of funding," Mr Vaz said.

After the meeting, Mr Winehouse said: "I am convinced that there's a willingness for people to change the way things are going.

"The allocation of funding is wrong and they need to look at that and I think they will."

Mitch Winehouse: "It is gratifying... things are going to change"

Last week, Mr Winehouse revealed plans to set up a foundation in his daughter's name to help people struggling with addiction unable to afford private treatment.

Martin Barnes, chief executive of the charity DrugScope, said: "Mitch Winehouse's ambitions for better access to drug treatment for all following the tragic death of his daughter Amy is to be welcomed.

"The provision of residential rehab is important for treating some of the most entrenched needs, particularly for adults.

"However, it is also important to emphasise that preventative and community-based services ought to be, for most people, the first port of call."

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