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12 months of 2019: September

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It's been an eventful year for HR-related issues hitting the headlines. Our 12 Days of Christmas countdown revisits each month's most notable happenings

Labour party conference

The Labour party announced a number of policies to radically change the world of work at its conference in Brighton, including a four-day working week, an end to zero-hours contracts and greater rights for pregnant and menopausal women at work.

Shadow chancellor John McDonnell said: “People in our country work some of the longest hours in Europe. And since the 1980s the link between increasing productivity and expanded free time has been broken. It’s time to put that right”.

But the CBI criticised the proposals for excluding business from the plans.

Climate strikes

Unions and organisations gave their backing to the youth climate strikes, as firms were urged to take more action on environmental issues.

A week of strikes and co-ordinated actions took place from 20 to 27 September ahead of the United Nations Climate Summit in New York on 27 September.

It comes after Swedish teenage activist Greta Thunberg urged adults to take more responsibility for tackling the climate crisis.

Thunberg said: "We feel a lot of adults haven’t quite understood that we young people won’t hold off the climate crisis ourselves. Sorry if this is inconvenient for you. But this is not a single-generation job. It’s humanity’s job."

We spoke to some of the employees who took part in strikes in London.

The best bits of HR magazine in September...

What next for unions?

Membership levels have tumbled since their peak in the late 1970s, so if unions are to continue to play an important role in the workplace change is necessary.

Fiona Deal: At home in the housing sector

Network Homes’ executive director of people and technology dominated the HR Excellence Awards this year for the second time – what's her secret to success?

Pimlico Plumbers and the gig economy dispute

Charlie Mullins spoke exclusively to HR magazine about his eight year legal battle and how he feels about the gig economy.

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