SNAP recipients all over Oregon can now use their benefits to pay online for eligible groceries from Walmart and Amazon. (The Enterprise/File)
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ONTARIO – Malheur County residents who receive benefits from the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, known as SNAP, can now pay for their groceries online when they shop from Walmart and Amazon.
Walmart is not offering grocery deliveries in Malheur County at this time. But residents can select and pay for eligible groceries online and schedule to pick up their purchase from the Walmart store located at 1775 E. Idaho Ave. in Ontario. A $30 minimum purchase is needed to unlock the pick-up and delivery options.
“They now have a choice of using their Electronic Benefit Card (EBT) at our local Walmart without having to go inside and from the comfort and added safety of their car,” said Dan Ramirez, self-sufficiency programs manager for the Department of Human Services in Ontario.
The state announced the decision Thursday, citing efforts to keep residents safe from COVID-19 by offering more options for social distancing.
Oregon is one of only five states where the online purchase option is currently available for SNAP recipients.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture, which oversees SNAP benefits at the federal level, kicked off the online purchasing pilot program in New York last April.
Washington state followed suit in January. Alabama, Oregon and Iowa jumped on board this month.
Oregon opened up online purchasing for SNAP recipients in Portland and Grants Pass earlier this month. The state Department of Human Services worked with Walmart and Amazon to roll out the option to the rest of the state in the face of the COVID-19 crisis.
SNAP benefits can be used to pay for eligible food items, but not delivery or service charges.
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