Sarbanes, Maryland Congressional Delegation Urge State and Retailers to Ensure SNAP Recipients Can Access Grocery Delivery and Pick-Up Services Amid COVID-19 Pandemic

Congressman John Sarbanes (D-Md.) and the Maryland Congressional Delegation today urged Maryland Department of Human Services (DHS) Secretary Lourdes R. Padilla and Maryland Retailers Association (MRA) President Cailey Locklair to ensure that Maryland Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) recipients can access grocery delivery and pick-up services in light of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“In order to minimize potential exposure to COVID-19, many Maryland residents have been using grocery delivery and pick-up services,” the Members wrote. “However, these services are out of reach for Marylanders using SNAP benefits to purchase their groceries.

The Members continue: “We are pleased that Maryland was selected by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) to participate in the SNAP Online Purchasing Pilot, which allows online grocery purchases using SNAP benefits. However, as you are aware, this pilot program is not yet operational in Maryland. We believe providing SNAP recipients with the ability to make online purchases has significant value at all times, but it is now critical in the midst of the COVID-19 crisis. We strongly urge DHS to work to make the SNAP Online Purchasing Pilot available statewide as expeditiously as possible.”