Paris Hilton says she is in her ‘Liam Neeson era’ as she addresses Congress

Paris Hilton said she is entering her “Liam Neeson era” as she spoke before a United States House of Representatives committee.

The American reality star and socialite, 43, has become a campaigner against child abuse in recent years, and was making a reference to Northern Irish actor Neeson’s movie Taken, where he stops at nothing to get his family rescued.

Hilton addressed the Ways and Means Committee in Washington in person on Wednesday to advocate for children in the American foster care system.

She posted on Instagram about her address, saying: “In my Liam Neeson era.

“From the California capitol in April to DC today, I will continue to advocate until every child is safe, and shine a bright light on these abuses.”

Hilton acknowledged that she had not been in the foster care system, while speaking to the members of Congress, but said: “I know from personal experience the harm that is caused by being placed in youth residential treatment facilities.

“When I was 16 years old, I was ripped from my bed in the middle of the night and transported across state lines to the first of four youth residential treatment facilities.

“These programmes promised healing, growth and support, but instead did not allow me to speak, move freely or even look out a window for two years.”

The Hilton Hotel heiress previously alleged during a documentary, called This Is Paris, that she suffered abuse at a Utah boarding school.

The 91st Academy Awards – Elton John AIDS Foundation Viewing Party – Los Angeles
Paris Hilton (PA)

She said: “So can you only imagine the experience for youth replaced by the state and don’t have people regularly checking in on them.

“I attended facilities with foster and adoptive youth. And I heard their testimony that they feel like they were forgotten, being shipped from facility to facility their whole childhoods.

“Today, residential facilities are continuing to warehouse over 50,000 foster youth and unknown number of adopted youth and locked down facilities, innocent kids who have not committed crimes, kids whose parents didn’t have resources to support them, kids whose parents passed away, kids who have already experienced trauma.”

Hilton added that the story of these children as a mother “breaks my heart”.

She also said: “Families need resources and support so they don’t need to come into the child welfare system in the first place.

“For children who do end up in foster care, we cannot allow them to grow up in facilities.

“The treatment these kids have had to endure is criminal. These kids deserve to grow up in safe family centred environments. I will not stop until America’s youth is safe. I’ve helped pass nine state laws on this issue.”

Hilton also urged Congress to join her in “creating a world where all children have a right to family love, education and the support they need” and told foster children that she sees them and they are “important”.

She has a daughter, London, and son, both born through surrogacy, with entrepreneur husband Carter Reum, whom she married in November 2021.