Barbara Ehrenreich, author of ‘Nickel and Dimed’, dies at 81

Photo: Patrick van Katwijk/WireImage

Barbara Ehrenreich, author and political activist, has died at the age of 81, her son confirmed on Twitter Friday afternoon. His most popular book, Nickel and Dimed: We (don’t) get by in America, focused on the injustices of low-wage workers in the United States. She went undercover at various minimum wage jobs and found it nearly impossible to support someone on that wage. Ehrenreich wrote over 20 books in her lifetime on social justice issues such as women’s rights, health care, and the labor movement. “She was, she said, ready to go,” tweeted her son, Ben Ehrenreich. “She was never very into thoughts and prayers, but you can honor her memory by loving one another and fighting like hell.”

She has worked with countless organizations focused on human rights causes. Barbara founded United Professionals in 2006, a nonprofit organization for white-collar workers. A few years later, she co-founded the Economic Hardship Report Drafta foundation supporting independent journalism by supporting writers in 2012. She is survived by her two children, Ben Ehrenreich and Rosa Brooks.

Lola R. McClure