(WASHINGTON, D.C.) - Congressman Jamie Raskin (MD-08) today joined Reps. Rosa DeLauro (CT-03), Alan Lowenthal (CA-47), Jan Schakowsky (IL-09), Doris Matsui (CA-06), Conor Lamb (PA-17), and Ilhan Omar (MN-05) in sending a letter with 58 House Democratic colleagues to the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Secretary Sonny Perdue urging USDA to expand online purchases for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) to all states and additional retailers. Currently, only a limited number of states are approved to administer online SNAP purchases.

“The move toward accommodating online purchases for SNAP benefits has a long history of bipartisan support that began in the 2014 Farm Bill,” said the Members. “More recently, the 2018 Farm Bill required a faster path toward scaling the pilot nationwide. The first phase of the pilot, which started in 2019, includes eight states and eight retailers.”

“As federal, state, and local governments expand social distancing measures to reduce transmissions of COVID-19, online purchases of food have become increasingly common to reduce public gathering in grocery stores,” continued the Members. “During this time, it is crucial that we keep SNAP working for those who need it most. Therefore, we again urge you to immediately expand the Online Purchasing Pilot to all states and additional retailers.”

A signed copy of the letter can be found here.