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Here’s Why Paris Hilton Is Meeting With Mitt Romney

Topline

Paris Hilton spent her second day on Capitol Hill by meeting with Sen. Mitt Romney as she advocates for lawmakers to reform the “troubled teen’ rehabilitation industry — programs Hilton attended in her youth and has said she suffered abuse at.

Key Facts

Romney (R-Utah) shared photos from his Thursday meeting with Hilton, 40, on Twitter, saying the former Simple Life star “has made substantial efforts on reforming Utah’s residential treatment centers for troubled teens,” and that he’s “grateful” for her federal efforts. 

Hilton had attended programs, including the Provo Canyon School, in Utah when she was a teenager and testified to the Utah Senate Judiciary, Law Enforcement and Criminal Justice Committee in February to urge them to more closely monitor these schools, according to People Magazine

On Wednesday, the daughter of real estate mogul Rick Hilton and The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills star Kathy Hilton spoke from outside the Capitol and announced she was working with a group of Democratic representatives to introduce legislation called The Accountability For Congregate Care Act that would regulate group facilities by giving children the right to call their parents, freedom from restraints and access to nutritional meals and clean water, according to NBC News

Crucial Quote

“Congress needs to act because children are dying in the name of treatment,” she told the outlet Wednesday, referencing the death of Cornelius Fredericks, a 16-year old who died last year after being restrained by staffers at a Michigan facility.

Key Background

Last year, Hilton revealed the abuse she suffered while attending four youth programs in her YouTube Originals documentary This is Paris. As a teen Hilton was forced to attend four different boarding schools that aimed to reform her bad behavior, her longest and, she alleges, most brutal stay being at Provo Canyon, which is still in operation though under different management. “[The staff]

NBC News

Tangent

Hilton is not the first reality star to shed her ditzy reputation and use her celebrity to create substantial change. Kim Kardashian West, Hilton’s friend and her former closet organizer, has become an advocate for prison reform. 

Further Reading

Here’s Why Hardcore Foodies Need To Watch Paris Hilton’s Cooking Show (Forbes) 

Paris Hilton Reveals What Fuels Her Drive In ‘This Is Paris’ Documentary (Forbes)

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