Paris Hilton returns to Utah to sign a ceremonial bill regulating centers for troubled teens


Paris Hilton returned to Salt Lake City, Utah on Tuesday for a ceremonial bill that signs a law regulating treatment centers for troubled teens in the state.

Legislation for facilities treating adolescents with behavioral and mental health issues got final approval in the Legislature in early March, about a month after Hilton provided emotional testimony in support of the bill. Governor Spencer Cox signed the bill last month, but held a ceremonial signing with Hilton on Tuesday.

The new law will require more government oversight of residential youth treatment centers and documentation of when they use restraints. It will also prohibit treatment centers from using sedatives or mechanical restraints without prior authorization.

Hilton testified that she was mentally and physically abused at a Utah boarding school, where she said staff members beat her, forced her to take unfamiliar pills, stared at her during the shower and sent her to solitary confinement without clothing as punishment.

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Paris Hilton poses for a photo outside Provo Canyon School during a protest on Friday, Oct. 9, 2020, in Provo, Utah. Hilton was in Utah on Friday to lead a protest outside a boarding school where she alleges that she was physically and mentally abused by staff as a teenager. Hilton, now 39, made the allegations public in a new documentary and wants a school closed that she says left her with nightmares and insomnia for years.
(AP Photo / Rick Bowmer)

The socialite and reality TV star also spoke about the abuse in a documentary titled “This is Paris” that was released this fall.

Since the documentary was released, other celebrities have spoken about their experiences at school or others like it, including Michael Jackson’s daughter Paris Jackson and tattoo artist Kat Von D.

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Several alumni and even a former school staff member supported Hilton’s allegations in previous interviews with Fox News, ultimately calling her “heroin.”

He has worked closely with the Breaking Code Silence movement, which is made up of survivors who raise awareness of institutional child abuse across the country. Members of the movement previously told Fox News that Hilton is “absolutely” the reason the issue made it to the state Senate committee.

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Paris Hilton wipes her eyes after speaking at a committee hearing at the Utah State Capitol, Monday, Feb. 8, 2021, in Salt Lake City.

Paris Hilton wipes her eyes after speaking at a committee hearing at the Utah State Capitol, Monday, Feb. 8, 2021, in Salt Lake City.
(AP Photo / Rick Bowmer)

In her February testimony, Hilton said she still suffers from nightmares and insomnia from her past abuse at Provo Canyon School. The school has previously declined to comment, claiming that because it is under new ownership since Hilton’s attendance, they are unable to comment.

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If you or a child you know is being abused, contact the Childhelp National Child Abuse Hotline at 1-800-4-A-CHILD (1-800-422-4453).

Associated Press contributed to this report.

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