Paris Hilton On Hand As Gov. Signs Bill Regulating Youth Facilities

Apr 6, 2021, 3:29 PM | Updated: 3:39 pm
Paris Hilton attends the ceremonial signing of SB127. (Utah Senate)...
Paris Hilton attends the ceremonial signing of SB127. (Utah Senate)
(Utah Senate)

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah — Utah Gov. Spencer Cox signed a bill that increases transparency and proposes to end abusive practices in Utah’s congregate care programs. Socialite and reality TV star Paris Hilton advocated for the bill and was on hand to see it become law. 

Hilton returned to Salt Lake City for the signing Tuesday afternoon. She joined the bill’s sponsor Sen. Mike McKell (R-Spanish Fork), Gov. Cox and Lt. Gov. Deidre Henderson at the Utah State Capitol.

“I am grateful for Senator McKell and Representative Brammer, who endlessly fought for youth in this state, and for the entire Legislature, who made S.B. 127 a reality,” said Hilton.

SB127 proposed that youth treatment centers “may not use a cruel, severe, unusual, or unnecessary practice on a child, including: a strip search; a body cavity search; inducing pain to obtain compliance; hyperextending joints; peer restraints; discipline or punishment that is intended to frighten or humiliate.”

It also required the treatment centers to maintain suicide prevention policies.

“It’s been over 15 years since we have had the opportunity to reform standards of these facilities,” said Gov. Cox. “I am so thankful that, in the Utah way, we brought people together to work on this significant issue.”

“I am ecstatic that S.B. 127 passed. As a state, we will take the necessary steps to increase transparency and prevent further mistreatment. Utah can and must lead the way to reform and end abusive practices,” said McKell.

Hilton testified in the state Senate Judiciary, Law Enforcement and Criminal Justice Committee in early February, where she spoke about the mental and physical abuse she said she suffered at Provo Canyon School at age 17.

“For the past 20 years, I’ve had a recurring nightmare where I am kidnapped in the middle of the night by two escorts, strip-searched and locked in a facility,” Hilton said. “I wish I could tell you this haunting nightmare was just a dream, but unfortunately it is not.”

For the 11 months Hilton attended the Utah boarding school, she said staff members would beat her, force her to take unknown pills, watch her shower and send her to solitary confinement without clothes as punishment.

Other women have come forward, alleging they were abused at the school.

“I want to thank Paris Hilton for her courage,” said Lt. Gov. Deidre Henderson. “It’s easy to do things the way we have always done them, it takes courage to ask questions and bring problems to light. Paris used her difficulties to make life better for other people and children.”

KSL 5 TV Live

Top Stories

Local News

Officer Alondra Zavala with the West Jordan Police Department. (Lauren Steinbrecher/KSL TV)...
Lauren Steinbrecher

West Jordan police taking on nation-wide initiative to recruit women to force

The West Jordan Police Department is taking on a nation-wide initiative to recruit more women to join the police force. The goal: 30% by the year 2030.
2 days ago
Dylan Murphy was shot and killed by police after his family called for help with his mental health....
Ashley Moser

Family questions calling 9-1-1 for mental health crisis after Sandy police shoot and kill brother

The family of Dylan Murphy, 33, is questioning if they should have called 9-1-1 for help with their brother’s mental health crisis.
2 days ago
Salt Lake City's Mazza restaurant is a finalist for the James Beard Award. (Jack Grimm/KSL TV)...
Alex Cabrero

Salt Lake’s Mazza named a finalist for prestigious restaurant award

Ali Sabbah has made a career out of serving Middle Eastern food at his Mazza restaurant in the 15th and 15th neighborhood of Salt Lake City.
2 days ago
Two people North Park police say are connected to a bomb threat in a Walmart on Friday, March 31, 2...
Gabrielle Shiozawa

Police seek help identifying 2 accused of making bomb threat at North Logan Walmart

Police are asking for the public's help in identifying two young men they believe made a bomb threat at the North Logan Walmart, forcing the evacuation of hundreds of store patrons and workers Friday afternoon.
2 days ago
Kay and Larry Woodcock (Pool photo)...
Lauren Steinbrecher

JJ Vallow’s grandparents fight claim they shouldn’t be allowed to watch Lori Vallow Daybell trial

The grandparents of Joshua JJ Vallow are asking an Idaho judge to allow them to sit in court and appoint them to represent the murdered 7-year-old, on the eve of the trial for JJ’s mother, Lori Vallow Daybell.
2 days ago
Snow covers canyon road completely...
Jed Boal

UDOT fights to keep roads open as avalanche danger continues into April

Greg Gagne, an avalanche forecaster with the Utah Avalanche Center, said the Wasatch mountains will continue to see elevated avalanche danger throughout the weekend, and rising danger early next week when then next storm moves in Sunday night.
2 days ago

Sponsored Articles

Stack of old laptops with dark background...
PC Laptops

Old Laptop Upgrades You Need to Try Before Throwing it Away

Get the most out of your investment. Try these old laptop upgrades before throwing it out to keep it running fast and efficient.
Happy diverse college or university students are having fun on their graduation day...
BYU MBA at the Marriott School of Business

How to Choose What MBA Program is Right for You: Take this Quiz Before You Apply!

Wondering what MBA program is right for you? Take this quiz before you apply to see if it will help you meet your goals.
Close up of an offset printing machine during production...
Les Olson IT

Top 7 Reasons to Add a Production Printer to Your Business

Learn about the different digital production printers and how they can help your company save time and money.
vintage photo of lighting showroom featuring chandeliers, lamps, wall lights and mirrors...
Lighting Design

History of Lighting Design | Over 25 Years of Providing Utah With the Latest Trends and Styles

Read about the history of Lighting Design, a family-owned and operated business that paved the way for the lighting industry in Utah.
Fiber Optical cables connected to an optic ports and Network cables connected to ethernet ports...
Brian Huston, CE and Anthony Perkins, BICSI

Why Every Business Needs a Structured Cabling System

A structured cabling system benefits businesses by giving you faster processing speeds and making your network more efficient and reliable.
notebook with password notes highlighted...
PC Laptops

How to Create Strong Passwords You Can Actually Remember

Learn how you can create strong passwords that are actually easy to remember! In a short time you can create new ones in seconds.
Paris Hilton On Hand As Gov. Signs Bill Regulating Youth Facilities