The Vermont Department of Public Safety is planning to release a map of police calls in communities across the state.

The ‘heat map dashboard’ will track police calls made in every Vermont town and city and make the data available to the public. Deputy Commissioner of Public Safety Dan Batsie said the goals are transpareancy and making communities safer.

“We’ll look at certain points like crime activity, overdose activity and things like that,” Batsie says.

Critics, however, are concerned that the data may be misleading. ACLU of Vermont Advocacy Director Falko Schilling says the map does not differentiate between police calls and actual crimes.

“We have concerns that [the map] can stoke fear in Vermonters and make them not feel as safe as they are,” he said. “It’s basically a map of where people live in the state of Vermont. The hotspots are where the most people live.

“Vermont continues to be one of the safest states in the country.”

State officials say they’re working to resolve these issues before making the data public, including counting the number of calls per capita instead of an overall number.

“With any statistics, we want to create a fair and balanced picture,” Batsie says. “When they look at it, we want them to be informed of the big picture.

“Obviously, areas of higher populations will have higher numbers based on population,” he said. “If you’re a small town and you have a burglary, that’s a 100% increase in the past week but we don’t want people looking at it without the context of it.”

The heat map will not contain the personal information of the callers and activity. State officials plan on using tools like heat maps in meetings with local town and city officials in the future.