The SFTU is involved in an ongoing campaign to win democratic and pluralist reforms in Swaziland, as well as the removal of what it sees as restrictive labour legislation.
Members of the SFTU have faced considerable opposition. In 1995 general secretary, Jan Sithole was threatened with deportation, and later kidnapped and abandon in the boot of a car. In 2002 he was publicly threatened by a Swazi senator and government delegate to the International Labour Organization.
The death of Mxolisi Mbata, treasurer of the SFTU, was attributed to injuries he incurred as a result of a beating reportedly received from police after they broke up an SFTU general council meeting.
The Congress of South African Trade Unions (COSATU) is an outspoken and active supporter of the SFTU.
The SFTU is affiliated with the International Trade Union Confederation.
There are 21 trade unions affiliated to the SFTU.