Expand Online Food Stamps Nationwide

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1 in 9 Americans receive food stamp benefits through SNAP (the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program). 34% of those receiving SNAP benefits are elderly or disabled. 

This amounts to over 12 million Americans who: 

1) rely on food stamps and 
2) are unable to use them because they cannot access physical grocery stores, due to disability, shelter-in-place laws, or COVID-19 risk. 

Expanding the USDA’s SNAP Online Purchasing Pilot could help feed America’s most vulnerable citizens. 

The Online Purchasing Pilot (OPP) enables SNAP users to apply food stamp benefits to purchase groceries online. Only 8 states were chosen to participate in the OPP. Once the pilot completes, this program will expand to all 50 states. We urge Congress to accelerate the process to support Americans who are urgently at risk during the COVID-19 pandemic. The expansion of the SNAP OPP should also allow those receiving WIC program benefits (nutritional aid for low-income women, infants, and children) to purchase groceries online.

We recognize that shopping platforms are overburdened, and enacting this policy may increase their traffic. Nonetheless, millions of Americans with no other options need these services now. Online grocers are rapidly expanding their capacity, and this program would expand their consumer base in the long term.

Citizens and state officials are asking for this program to expand nationwide now, rather than wait until the pilot completes.

Congress: Include a provision to expand the SNAP Online Purchasing Pilot to all 50 states in the next Congressional package. 

Joel Berg (CEO of Hunger Free America)

Ertharin Cousin (12th Executive Director of the UN World Food Programme, former COO of Feeding America, CEO of Food Systems for the Future)

Kara Walker, MD (Secretary of the Delaware Department of Health and Social Services) 

Karyl T. Rattay, MD (Director of the Delaware Division of Public Health)

Josh Protas (Director of Government Affairs at MAZON: A Jewish Response to Hunger)

Dmitriy (Jim) Kolchin (Founder of iWallet)

Gleb Nikitenko (USF Entrepreneurship and Innovation Program Director)

Jim Lesch and Eugene Burd (Co-founders of Basketful)

Eric Brandt, MD (National Clinician Scholar at the Yale School of Medicine)

Caldwell Esselstyn, MD (Former President of the American Association of Endocrine Surgeons)

Columbus D Batiste, MD, FACC, FSCAI (Chief of Cardiology KP Riverside & Moreno Valley Medical Center)

Christopher Gardner, PhD (Lifestyle Council Leadership Committee of the American Heart Association)