UK

Budget 2015: George Osborne Accused Of #CallThingsTheLivingWageThatArent

08/07/2015 16:11 BST | Updated 08/07/2015 16:59 BST

George Osborne has announced plans to implement a "compulsory living wage" for over 25s in his Budget address on Wednesday.

Set at the rate of £7.20 an hour, it is a sizeable uplift from the current £6.50.

The Chancellor hailed his new initiative as helping bolster the country's financial security, claiming "Britain is getting a pay rise".

But - perhaps predictably - not everyone is convinced of the Chancellor's generosity.

Osborne has failed to win over many people, with some frustrated that the planned mandatory living wage was not, in fact, a living wage.

The non-compulsory hourly payment advocated by the Living Wage Foundation is actually £9.15 - almost £2 more than the Tory MP's proposal.

Cue birth of the '#CallThingsTheLivingWageThatArent' hashtag, spawned by Guardian columnist Owen Jones.

The Twitter backlash came after Osborne delivered the first Conservative-only Budget for nearly 20 years, young people being some of the worst affected by proposed cuts, the Chancellor confirming that student maintenance grants will be abolished in 2016-17 and tuition fees are to rise in line with inflation.

Osborne pointed to the Greek crisis as evidence that a "bold new settlement" is needed, saying Britain was still "borrowing too much and spending too much".

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