Following the death of her niece in Thousand Oaks, California's mass shooting, Tamera Mowry-Housley returned to work hosting The Real by speaking out against mass shootings in America.

As Blavity reported, 12 people were killed when gunman David Long opened fire at a Thousand Oaks bar. One of those killed was Mowry-Housley's niece, 18-year-old Pepperdine University student Alaina Housley. On her first day back with her talk show, the host used her platform to address her fellow Americans, asking them for help in the fight against gun violence, BuzzFeed News reports.

"Our country – and it's sad to say this – but you have to be living underneath a rock to not believe these words: our country is sick," Mowry-Housley said. "It's diseased; it needs healing. It needs healing from within."

According to Mowry-Housley, that healing will require the help of lawmakers.

"We need change when it comes to gun violence, and I don't care if I have to knock on the doors of the White House to do it, to advocate change," she said, adding, “I feel that if we talk to our representatives, and talk from that place, maybe, just maybe, we'll be able to move forward."

The actress also spoke about her relationship to Alaina, according to USA Today, saying the young woman was more than her niece, but her "sister for my heart."

"I met Alaina when she was 5, and the Housleys – we were a group of 10, meaning whenever we were together, we were together," she said. "I'm very blessed to have an amazing mother-in-law, father-in-law, sister-in-law, brother-in-law. So, they are my family, along with my immediate family."

After the show, Mowry-Housley continued her tribute to the student on Instagram, writing she was "nervous" talking about gun reform on her show but that she believes Alaina helped her through it. 

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