The European Union and its Member States have expressed their commitment to the Humanitarian Principles, as affirmed by the Humanitarian Consensus. However,  there sometimes is a gap between policies and practice . This gap has negative consequences  for humanitarian actors and ultimately for crisis affected communities.

Caritas Europa advocates the primacy of the core humanitarian principles of humanity, neutrality, impartiality and independence. These are borne out of International Humanitarian Law and enshrined in the Red Cross/red Crescent Code of Conduct for Humanitarian Aid. They provide a value base that underpins the day-to-day operations of humanitarian organisatons in situations of both natural disaster and conflict.