Paris Hilton feels like ‘weight is lifted’ after reporting boarding school abuse
Paris Hilton felt a "weight lifted off [her] shoulders" after she opened up about the abuse she endured as a teen at a residential behavioural school.
The heiress, businesswoman and DJ claimed she saw staff "hitting and strangling" students during the 11 months she spent at the school in the nineties.
Speaking ahead of the release of her new documentary, This is Paris, Hilton, 39, explained her experience was "just like living in hell" and how she felt staff "got off" on "torturing children and seeing them naked" and humiliated.
Paris’ new documentary aims to show the woman behind the showbiz character and clear up misconceptions about her – but the film also features details of her life she’s never opened up about before.
The former reality TV star will reveal deeply personal details of alleged abuse at the residential behavioural school she was sent to as a teenager.
After sneaking out to go clubbing in New York as a teen, Paris’ mum Kathy sent her to an "outdoor wilderness programme" and later a Utah based boarding school for troubled teens and psychiatric treatment centre.
Paris reveals details of the alleged abuse in the documentary.
She claims she was physically and mentally abused; beaten, forced to spend time in solitary confinement, and given prescription drugs at the school, Provo Canyon.
She said many other endured this too, and is joined by other students who were there at the same time for her documentary.
"I definitely feel like a weight is lifted off my shoulders," she told Sky News ahead of the documentary’s release.
"At first I was very nervous and when I was even in the editing room [for the documentary], I was like, we need to cut this out, I don't want anyone hearing about this."
But she explained she feels different now the documentary’s trailer is out there.
She said she’s received an "outpouring" of emails from "survivors" who went to the same school, and even from parents who had seen the trailer and "pulled their children out of there".
Paris went on to explain she’s never opened up about her experiences before now. "I haven't ever told anyone this either because I was just so traumatised and didn't want to talk about it," she told the broadcaster.
"Just the fact that it's helping make change makes it all worth it to me that I said my story and that I even went through this."
Paris, who turns 40 next year, explains how she suffers with anxiety and trust issues all these years later in her new film.
In a statement, the Provo Canyon school said it cannot comment on the claims made by Hilton and her peers.
"Originally opened in 1971, Provo Canyon School was sold by its previous ownership in August 2000.
"We therefore cannot comment on the operations or patient experience prior to this time," the statement read.
This Is Paris was initially supposed to premiere at the Tribeca Film Festival this past April, but is now debuting on YouTube on September 14.
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