PETALING JAYA: The livelihood of workers is still being sidelined despite development in the country, the Malaysian Trades Union Congress (MTUC) said. Although there are many laws that have been enacted to protect the welfare of workers, MTUC pointed out that the provisions are amended from time to time to slowly erode workers' rights and control the influence of trade unions. "Thus, there is a need to strengthen workers' movements in the country to champion workers' rights and interests. "It is as important as how we work together to build strong ties with global trade unions and movements," MTUC secretary-general Gopal Kishnam said in a statement today in conjunction with Workers' Day. Urging the government to resolve the plights of labourers, he said the workers' welfare in the country is not given priority despite the growth of the nation. Gopal said MTUC has urged the government to make it compulsory for employers to pay workers a RM300 cost of living allowance (Cola). He said workers in the country have been facing problems related to reduced net income, work hazards, denial of workers' union rights and employment status.