SPRINGFIELD, Ill. – A measure to expand options for people experiencing food insecurity spearheaded by state Rep. Sonya Harper, D-Chicago, recently became law in Illinois.

“Far too many Illinoisans don’t have a place to prepare, store or cook food in order to receive necessary sustenance,” Harper said. “Unfortunately, overly-restrictive policies are preventing them from getting the assistance they deserve.”

Harper sponsored House Bill 3343 to allow disabled, elderly and homeless people receiving assistance through the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) to use SNAP benefits at certain restaurants, giving people who are physically unable to prepare food or have no place to store groceries access to prepared meals. Currently, Arizona and California offer the Restaurant Meals Program, a voluntary program under federal law, while Florida and Rhode Island are operating pilot projects. Illinois residents are currently limited in how they can use SNAP, severely restricting homeless and disabled individuals’ access to food.

“This bill will help give our must vulnerable Illinoisans access to good meals” Harper said. “I applaud my colleagues in the General Assembly as well as Gov. J.B. Pritzker for supporting this measure, which will reduce hunger and support local businesses.”

Harper represents the 6th District, which includes all or portions of Armour Square, Bridgeport, Chicago Lawn, Englewood, Gage Park, Back of the Yards, Canaryville, New City, West Englewood, Marquette Park, South Loop and River North.

Rep. Sonya HarperRep. Sonya Harper

6th District

Visit Rep Harper’s website

Springfield Office:
274-S Stratton Office Building
Springfield, IL 62706
(217) 782-5971

District Office:
4926 South Ashland
Chicago, IL  60609
(773) 925-6580
(773) 925-6584 FAX