According to 9 News, the state of Victoria has the highest non-Christina affiliation rate in the country, more than 10 percent.
Anti-Christian, and anti-Catholic sentiment in particular, has been a much-discussed topic both in the state and nationwide. A Royal Commission report last year uncovered decades of incidences of child sexual abuse by personnel in Church-run institutions in the country.
The verdict to convict Cardinal Pell, formerly Archbishop of Melbourne, by a Victoria court last year has come under sustained criticism in some quarters of the national media, with many questioning if anti-Catholic sentiment, conditioned by years of negative media coverage of the Church, may have tainted public opinion – including the jury pool.
In the neighboring state of South Australia, the conviction of former Archbishop of Adelaide Philip Wilson was overturned on appeal when a judge found anti-Catholicism had played a determining factor in the initial decision.