Source: The Herald Sun, Tuesday 25 June, 1996, p.9
By CHERYL CRITCHLEY, family reporter VICTORIANS are a conservative lot, a survey of the latest social trends has found. Not only do they smoke less than other Australians, they spend less on grog and are least likely to cohabit outside wedlock They also have fewest babies outside marriage and the highest rate of first-time nuptials. The non-radical picture was painted by the Australian Bureau of Statistics' Australian Social Trends 1996, released yesterday. It puzzled experts, who struggled to explain why Victoria appeared to be Australia's conservative capital. While some thought it was related to the high rate of southern European migrants, others were not so sure. Family sizes and birth rates were still relatively low in 1995, while the number of single-person households had grown. Asian migration and the disadvantage of Aborigines increased. The report found that while the number of de facto couples and births outside marriage continued to grow, Victoria lagged behind. Of all states and territories it had the: LOWEST percentage of defacto couples - 6.7 compared with the national average of 8.2. HIGHEST percentage of people marrying for the first time-70.7 per cent, compared with the national average of 67.5. LOWEST percentage of births outside marriage - 20.5 per cent, compared with the national average of 25.6. LOWEST adult smoking rate - 27.6 per cent (national average 28.4). LEAST expenditure on alcohol-2.7 per cent of average weekly expenditure (national average 2.9).
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