Paris Hilton comes to Sacramento to lobby on behalf of ‘troubled teen’ industry transparency bill

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Sacramento is familiar with starpower. Celebrities often come to the Capitol to lobby on behalf of legislation (or as elected officials).

On Monday, the celebrity in question was actor, reality show star and heiress Paris Hilton, who talked about her experience in California’s “troubled teen” industry.

Hilton was speaking on behalf of SB 1043, a bill by Sen. Shannon Grove, R-Bakersfield, that is intended to bring transparency and accountability to youth residential facilities, such as the one where Hilton was sent when she was 17.

“I know firsthand the horrors that happen behind closed of youth residential facilities,” Hilton said. “...It’s a nightmare that no child should ever have to endure.”

While in custody, Hilton was subjected to isolation and denied “even the most basic rights,” she said.

She described being unable to tell her parents about mistreatment without the phone being taken away and being subject to physical retribution.

“I lived in constant fear, not knowing what would happen next,” she said. “...What’s even more disturbing is my horror story is not unique.”

Celebrity advocate Paris Hilton wipes a tear as state Sen. Aisha Wahab, D-Hayward, talks during a bipartisan press conference to highlight Senate Bill 1043, which is intended to bring transparency and accountability to youth residential facilities, on Monday. Hilton was sent to one such facility when she was 17. Also at the podium are Sens. Janet Nguyen, R-Huntington Beach, right, and Susan Rubio, D-Los Angeles County, far right.

Grove said that “many of us have seen the recent media surrounding these troubled teen facilities across the country.”

While California has taken strides to address concerns of abuse, and to bring youths home from out-of-state facilities, Grove said that “there is still work that needs to be done.”

“Knowing what these children have experienced, we must require the highest level of transparency and accountability in care for our vulnerable population,” Grove said.

SB 1043 requires that the California Department of Social Services create an online dashboard no later than Jan. 1, 2026 that would display data on the use of restraints and seclusion rooms, including whether that usage resulted in injury or death.

The bill has no recorded opposition.


For the second straight year, animal welfare advocates are coming to Sacramento to lobby on behalf of their furry and four-legged client, bringing some animals with them.

They’re championing bills such as AB 2248, by Assemblyman Brian Maienschein, D-San Diego, to crack down on puppy and kitten mills; SB 1233, by Sen. Scott Wilk, R-Santa Clarita, to establish a spay-neuter curriculum at the University of California and Western University of Healh Sciences veterinary medicine programs; and AB 2216, by Assemblyman Matt Haney, D-San Francisco, to limit landlords ability to charge “pet rent.”

These efforts come as California is in the middle of a multi-year effort to reduce animal euthanasia in the state, an effort that has run into a number of roadblocks, as previously reported in The Bee.

The advocacy day is sponsored by the San Francisco SPCA, as well as the ASPCA, California Animal Welfare Association, Human Society of the United States, Marin Humane and the San Diego Humane Society.

“The bills we are supporting will put forward novel public policy solutions that will provide long-term support to companion animals and their people,” said SF SPCA CEO Jennifer Scarlett in a statement. “We are facing significant challenges in California right now, but by working together, we can address the structural reforms needed to start making necessary changes.”


While the 2026 campaign for governor is shaping up to be the marquee race for the next election cycle, don’t sleep on the race for lieutenant governor, which saw a new candidate announcement Monday.

Sen. Steven Bradford, D-Gardena, announced his intent to run, saying in a statement that California is experiencing “a significant economic downturn.”

“People across California are struggling. Housing costs are out of reach, homelessness is at crisis levels, the global threat of climate change, underfunded schools, and debt-inducing higher education costs. Government needs to become more effective at addressing the needs of everyday Californians. We need higher wages and lower cost of living for working people in every corner of our state,” he said.

Bradford, who first was elected to the Senate in 2016, also served in the Assembly from 2009 to 2014.

His campaign notes that in his time in office, Bradford has authored “a broad spectrum of bills on criminal justice reform, economic development, banking and finance, economic equity, energy policy, criminal justice reform, reproductive freedom, gun safety laws, college athletics and more.”

Bradford has championed Black reparations legislation, including a bill — SB 1331 — to establish a Fund for Reparations and Reparative Justice “for the purpose of funding policies approved by the Legislature and the governor that indemnify descendants of an African American descendants of a chattel enslaved person or descendants of a free Black person living in the United States prior to the end of the 19th century.”

Bradford is the second prominent Democrat to announce a bid for lieutenant governor, a position which in the past has served as a springboard to the governor’s seat, most recently for California Gov. Gavin Newsom. Also running is California Treasurer Fiona Ma.


“Had I been advising him, I’m not sure I would have said, ‘Yeah, that’s a great idea.’”

- Sen. Laphonza Butler, D-California, on Gov. Gavin Newsom’s televised debate with Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, according to Mark Leibovich in The Atlantic.

Best of The Bee:

  • Ag groups spend millions on ads to discourage California farmworker unionizing. What to know, via Mathew Miranda and Melissa Montalvo.

  • Newsom’s bread and butter politics: Evading accountability in the shadows of scandal, via Senate Minority Leader Brian Jones (OPINION)

  • Sacramento Bee journalists recognized for exceptional coverage in 2023 at Press Club awards, via Rosalio Ahumada.

  • Google could block your California news. Will state leaders stand up to tech bully? Via The Sacramento Bee Editorial Board (OPINION)

  • This California city passed a voter ID law. Now the attorney general is suing to block it, via Andrew Sheeler.