AN MP says he fears emergency service workers and NHS staff now face being spat at on a routine basis.

Hove and Portslade MP Peter Kyle said there have been numerous incidents of spit attacks being reported by The Argus.

He said some cases have included “vicious” incidents against A&E staff at the Royal Sussex County Hospital.

Indeed it follows reports of some defendants being jailed for the disgusting behaviour.

But the Labour MP, who is also a shadow justice minister, says in many cases it has exposed the lack of support and help given to people with alcohol and drug problems.

For example The Argus reported on the case of Christina Whelan who was jailed spitting at and punching police and hospital staff. She had battled alcoholism for many years after trauma in her younger life.

Peter Kyle said: "Almost daily,

The Argus is reporting vicious assaults and spitting against A&E staff and police.

"I’m pleased magistrates are acting with tough sentences.

"Yet most perpetrators are reported as alcohol and drug dependent. Early support could have helped them and prevented crime.

"Imagine being spat at simply for trying to heal someone or keep them safe?

"This is becoming normalised for doctors, paramedics, police and frontline workers like supermarket staff.

"Failure to support people with multiple challenges early means more good people suffer later."