NEW YORK (AP) _ Vice President Al Gore told the NAACP today that ending the practice of racial profiling by police departments would be a top priority in his presidential administration.

``We need to end the shameful practice of racial profiling,'' Gore told 3,000 NAACP members on the closing day of the organization's annual national convention.

``If I'm elected president, ending racial profiling will be the first civil rights act of the new century,'' Gore said to a standing ovation.

Black advocates say racial profiling, the police practice of singling out minorities for questioning at airports, on highways and on streets, is often at the crux of fatal shootings, such as the killings of young blacks by police under questionable circumstances in New York, Pittsburgh and Riverside, Calif.

Gore, front-runner for the Democratic presidential nomination in 2000, repeated his call for strong national gun safety provisions, saying handgun purchasers should be required to have photo licenses.

``We are going to create a family lobby that will be more powerful than the gun lobby,'' Gore said.

The photo license provision is part of an anti-crime agenda Gore has outlined this week.

In a speech Monday to Boston city police officers, Gore announced a plan for ``gang-free zones'' with curfews on individual gang members and a ban on ``gang-related clothing.''

Gore focused on reducing rural crime on campaign stops in Iowa on Tuesday and Wednesday.