Over 40 million Americans rely on SNAP to provide food for their households. And that number has dramatically increased in light of the COVID-19 pandemic. While many Americans have turned to online grocery store pick-up and delivery services to fulfill their food needs, Americans relying on SNAP have faced barriers with online and delivery food services. Online SNAP purchasing is currently limited to a very small number of approved retailers due to technological and financial barriers. This limits SNAP shoppers’ options, gives large corporations like Amazon an unfair advantage, and leaves out smaller and independent grocers, local growers and farmers markets, and other specialty neighborhood retailers.
You can help by contacting your elected officials. The Expanding SNAP Options Act, introduced by Senator Durbin and Senator Duckworth,calls for the creation of a universal online and app-based portal that will allow smaller retailers and farmers to accept SNAP purchases online.
The Act would also create a technical assistance center to facilitate online purchasing and use of the portal for smaller retailers, direct-to-consumer farmers, and farmers’ markets; as well as provide customers with information on local participating vendors.
SNAP participants deserve the same access to COVID-safe shopping options as all consumers. This proposed legislation would remove a significant barrier and allow smaller retailers to offer online shopping to SNAP customers – not just Walmart and Amazon. Please contact your elected representatives today.