City Councilor Michael P. Ross, among the two dozen candidates running for mayor, is receiving the backing of the union that represents crews on Boston ambulances, a group that in recent years has not endorsed candidates.
The union leadership voted unanimously earlier this week to throw its support behind Ross. The union—the EMS Division of the Boston Police Patrolmen’s Association—represents roughly 380 emergency medical technicians, paramedics, lieutenants, and captains that work at Boston EMS.
“Councilor Ross has been an advocate for EMS,” said union treasurer Tony O’Brien. “We’re going to do anything and everything we can do.”
As a city councilor, Ross was instrumental in helping EMS gain the same pension and injury pay as police, firefighters, and other first responders, O’Brien said.
“This is a great show of early support,” Ross said Thursday. “I have enormous respect for the courage and heroism of our first responders, particularly what we have seen the last few weeks.”
The union plans to make financial donations to the campaign and help Ross in other ways.
“We’ll utilize our membership to go out and hold signs, do phone banks, whatever we can do to help,” O’Brien said.
Ross is one of 24 candidates running to succeed Mayor Thomas M. Menino. Two other candidates—state Representative Martin J. Walsh and City Councilor Felix G. Arroyo—have strong ties to labor and are expected to win most union endorsements.
Walsh is a longtime member of Laborers Local 223 and previously served as business manager of the Boston Building Trades, an umbrella group that represents unions of ironworkers, electricians, and others.
Arroyo previously served as political director for Service Employees International Union Local 615. The union, which has 5,600 members in Boston, has formally endorsed Arroyo’s candidacy, according to his campaign. Andrew Ryan can be reached at email@example.com Follow him on Twitter @globeandrewryan.