Commenting on ONS figures showing that last year there were the highest number of drug poisoning deaths since records began, Liberal Democrat Shadow Health Secretary Norman Lamb said:
"These latest statistics highlight the abject failure of the Government's drug strategy.
"Lives are being lost but the Conservatives seem wedded to this hard-line approach.
"We have to accept the realities facing us and start taking action that works. Rather than locking up addicts we should be giving these individuals the help they need. How many more lives will be lost before the Government realises this?"
Candidate for Neath in the general election, Frank Little, added: "Giving help along the lines proposed by Norman Lamb and the Liberal Democrats will not only save lives but remove the dangerous drug paraphernalia dumped in Neath's alleys and playgrounds. It should also cut down the number of homeless on our streets".