IN REPLY to Rev Macnaughton (Letters, June 27), I did not claim the Living Wage Commission called for the payments to be mandatory. I understand that it is (currently) a voluntary aspiration rather than a legislative objective.

My point is that a 20 per cent hike in wages is not insignificant but a massive cost increase that many firms will not be able to sustain.

The living wage has the capacity to destroy very many jobs and make unemployment far worse than it is at present. This should not be underestimated.

Those who are claiming that one million people can be awarded the Living Wage increase with “no adverse effects on the economy” are people like the Archbishop of York’s Chief of Staff. In other words people who don’t have to do it.

It is the easiest thing in the world to tell others what they should be doing.

If it is so achievable to set up and run viable businesses paying good wages then why don’t all the members of the Living Wage Commission start enterprises themselves to show us all how it can be done?

Matthew Laverack, Entrepreneur of this parish, Lord Mayor’s Walk, York.