DISTRAUGHT grandparents who lost their 14-year-old granddaughter in a road crash are calling for road-side drug testing.
Lillian Groves lost her life after being hit by a car in Croydon in June 2010. The driver, 36-year-old John Page, was given an eight-month prison sentence for her death, despite there being a half-smoked cannabis joint on the dashboard of the car.
Lillian’s grandparents Peter and Pam Sanders, from Langney, are calling for road-side drug testing equipment, tougher sentencing and spot checks.
The couple are calling on the people of Eastbourne to back their ‘Lillian’s Law’ petition for tougher measures against drug-driving. Mr Sanders said, “The government is sitting on this. There is equipment out there that can test for drugs at the roadside.
“The government has been talking about this for 15 years and in that time Lillian has been born and killed because of drug-driving.”
And Mrs Sanders said, “We have lost our granddaughter but this issue needs to be highlighted so that this doesn’t happen to anyone else.
“We are also doing this in memory of Lillian.”
The grandparents have been campaigning in Eastbourne and asking people to sign their petition. They have been to Langney Shopping Centre and along the seafront with their clipboards.
Eastbourne MP Stephen Lloyd is backing Mr and Mrs Sanders’ campaign and said, “When Mrs Sanders came to see me at my surgery in Shinewater I was struck with how courageous the family have been in dealing with what almost amounts to a miscarriage of justice.
“I was unaware that drug tests were not part of the normal breathalysing process but it appears that current systems could allow someone who has been driving under the influence of narcotics to get off with a substantially lesser sentence than if they were drink driving.
“I was very happy to sign the Lillian’s Law petition and as soon as I get back to parliament I will be lobbying the government to change the law.”
To support the petition visit epetitions.direct.gov.uk.