A CAMPAIGNING mother whose son committed suicide years after he was the victim of sexual abuse has seen her fight for more detox beds taken directly to the Prime Minister by a Bradford MP.

Imran Hussain, Labour MP for Bradford East, delivered a petition signed by almost 5,000 residents to Downing Street, urging Theresa May to act and support mental health and substance misuse care services in Bradford and across the UK.

Dorothy Holt launched the campaign following the death of her son, Simon, 44, a year ago. He hanged himself in Bowling Cemetery, close to his home.

Mr Holt had been sexually and physically assaulted in 1993 by self-styled preacher Brian Jackson, who was jailed for life in 2012 for a 30-year campaign of rape, brutality and sexual assault against at least six victims.

Mr Holt, a former postman and electrician, was so traumatised by his ordeal he fell into heroin addiction and was also diagnosed with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.

Mrs Holt set up her campaign, Justice for Simon Holt, in a bid to get more detoxification beds for drink and drug addicts.

Speaking yesterday, she said: “I have to thank Mr Hussain, and I hope the petition is put right in front of Theresa May.

“I’m so happy and so upset at the same time.

“At my boy’s funeral, I said that Simon was a very important person, and I’m fighting to make sure his name will never be forgotten.”

In 2013, the Government transferred the provision of substance misuse services away from the NHS to local authorities, leading to referrals and barriers to all-inclusive care becoming more complex, which according to Mr Hussain, created a system that badly let down Ms Holt’s son.

In addition to calling for the Government to provide the additional funding to local authorities needed to increase the number of substance misuse detoxification beds available, in his letter to the Prime Minister, Mr Hussain also backed MIND, the mental health charity’s campaign in calling for greater support to be given to GPs, who are often the frontline and first point of contact for people suffering from mental health and substance misuse issues, alongside urging greater funding for mental health services at large.

Speaking on the mental health campaign and petition, Mr Hussain said: “For too long, mental health has been considered a poor relation to physical health that has been chronically underfunded, and despite progress being made on the issue, we still face a substantial challenge in achieving parity of esteem for mental health, so it is vital that GPs receive the proper training and funding to help them deal with the issues.

“Mental health problems correlate with substance abuse, whether by consequence or cause, creating a terrible infliction that traps thousands of people across the UK.

“By personally taking this petition to Downing Street and writing to the Prime Minister, I hope that the Government will listen to the growing evidence that mental health services are not adequately funded to support the increase in demand, and I hope that she will also look seriously at not only providing better training to GPs, clearer referral pathways, and increased mental health funding, but also assistance to local authorities to ensure that no one with substance misuse problems has to be turned away when seeking help.”

A spokesman for the Prime Minister’s Office said all petitions were responded to as a matter of course.