DC residents in SNAP can use benefits to buy groceries on Amazon during pandemic

D.C. residents struggling during the coronavirus pandemic can use their SNAP benefits to pay for groceries on Amazon, Mayor Muriel Bowser said Wednesday.

One of the goals of the move is to make sure District residents can isolate.

“Taking care of necessities and essentials like food will help people do that,” Bowser said. “Several weeks ago, we applied for a waiver from the federal government that would allow SNAP beneficiaries to use their benefits to buy groceries online.”

Amazon is currently the only retailer approved by the federal government for SNAP. There are three SNAP-eligible options:  AmazonAmazon Pantry and Amazon Fresh.

While someone cannot use SNAP funds to cover shipping or delivery fees, Amazon said it is still possible to get free delivery.

Bowser said the city is looking to expand the options.

“We’re also assisting local retailers who are interested in participating in the program with submitting their applications for review and approval by the USDA,” she said. “This is a very good thing.”

To learn more about SNAP eligibility, including income requirements, allowable deductions and resource requirements check D.C.’s portal online.

Residents can apply for SNAP benefits by completing an application online as well.

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Will Vitka

William Vitka is a Digital Writer/Editor for WTOP.com. He's been in the news industry for over a decade. Before joining WTOP, he worked for CBS News, Stuff Magazine, The New York Post and wrote a variety of books—about a dozen of them, with more to come.

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